If you are reading this blog, it probably means that you are seeking more information on pending plans to mine uranium in our beautiful Virginia. The objective of this blog is provide our readers with the background information and updates on any developments pertaining to proposed uranium mining in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
For more detailed information please check our newly created website: www.uraniumfreeVA.org

Monday, December 19, 2011

NAS Report Validates Major Environmental, Health Concerns Raised by Uranium Mining Opponents


RICHMOND, VA - The long-awaited report issued by the National Academy of Sciences today echoes numerous pitfalls with potential uranium mining, milling and waste disposal in the Commonwealth that many concerned Virginians have expressed in past months.

The 300-page report was commissioned by the Virginia Coal and Energy Commission and is part of an ongoing contract between the commission and NAS that includes a public outreach and public meeting period over the next five months. The report does not make any recommendations about whether Virginia should or should not allow uranium mining, but raises significant environmental and public health concerns.

State law has maintained a nearly 30-year ban on uranium mining. Virginia Uranium, Inc., which wants to establish a uranium mine, mill, and waste disposal site in Pittsylvania County, is pushing the General Assembly to lift the ban in 2012, beginning with the drafting of regulations.

"This is a huge validation for many of the core concerns that we have been raising," said Cale Jaffe, senior attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center. "As the report highlights, a uranium mine or processing facility could be subject to an uncontrolled release as a result of flood, hurricane, or earthquake. In Virginia, we've experienced all of those extreme events just this year."

"The report highlights the difficulty of storing radioactive waste for thousands of years, given Virginia's climate, geology and population density. " said Dan Holmes, Director of State Policy for the Piedmont Environmental Council. "We are now more convinced that this would be a dangerous experiment in Virginia."

Among the cautionary points found by the NAS study committee:

A HUGE RISK - ACCORDING TO THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES: "Furthermore, Virginia is subject to relatively frequent storms that produce intense rainfall. It is questionable whether currently-engineered tailings repositories could be expected to prevent erosion and surface and groundwater contamination for as long as 1,000 years. Natural events such as hurricanes, earthquakes, intense rainfall, or drought could lead to the release of contaminants if facilities are not designed and constructed to withstand such events, or if they fail to perform as designed."

SEVERE CONTAMINATION RISKS EXIST: "Moreover, in a hydrologically active environment such as Virginia, with relatively frequent tropical and convective storms producing intense rainfall, it is questionable whether currently-engineered tailings repositories could be expected to prevent erosion and surface and groundwater contamination for 1,000 years. There are many reports in the literature of releases from improperly disposed tailings and their environmental effects."

A HIGH STAKES GAMBLE: "A mine or processing facility could also be subject to uncontrolled releases of radioactive materials as a result of human error or an extreme event such as a flood, fire, or earthquake."

ADVERSE IMPACTS FOR SOUTHSIDE AGRICULTURE: "Exposure could also occur from the release of contaminated water, or by leaching of radioactive materials into surface or groundwater from uranium tailings or other waste materials, where they could eventually end up in drinking water supplies or could accumulate in the food chain, eventually ending up in the meat, fish, or milk produced in the area."

A HIGH STAKES GAMBLE: "Uranium tailings present a significant potential source of radioactive contamination for thousands of years ... because monitoring of tailings management sites has only been carried out for a short period, monitoring data are insufficient to assess the long-term effectiveness of tailings management facilities designed and constructed according to modern best practices."

CURENT U.S. REGULATIONS ARE INSUFFICIENT: "The decay products of uranium (e.g., 230-Th, 226-Ra) provide a constant source of radiation in uranium tailings for thousands of years, substantially outlasting the current U.S. regulations for oversight of processing facility tailings."

CURRENT U.S REGULATIONS ARE INSUFFICIENT: "The United States federal government has only limited recent experience regulating conventional uranium processing and reclamation of uranium mining and processing facilities. Because almost all uranium mining and processing to date has taken place in parts of the United States that have a negative water balance (dry climates with low rainfall), federal agencies have limited experience applying laws and regulations in positive water balance (wet climates with medium to high rainfall) situations."

CURRENT U.S. REGULATIONS ARE INSUFFICIENT: "The United States' federal government has only limited experience regulating conventional uranium mining, processing, and reclamation over the past two decades, with little new open pit and under-ground uranium mining activity in the United States since the late 1980s."

LONG-TERM RISK: "Tailings disposal sites represent potential sources of contamination for thousands of years, and the long-term risks remain poorly defined."

UNKNOWN RISK: "Additionally, until comprehensive site-specific risk assessments are conducted, including accident and failure analyses, the short-term risk associated with natural disasters, accidents, and spills remain poorly defined."

UNIQUE RISKS FOR VIRGINIA: "In the recent past, most uranium mining and processing has taken place in parts of the United States that have a negative water balance (dry climates with low rainfall), and consequently federal agencies have little experience developing and applying laws and regulations in locations with abundant rainfall and groundwater, and a positive water balance (wet climates with medium to high rainfall), such as Virginia."

PUBLIC PROCESS: "However, under the current regulatory structure, opportunities for meaningful public involvement are fragmented and limited."

WATER QUALITY IMPACTS: "Disturbances of the land surface associated with uranium mining in Virginia would be expected to have significant effects on both on-site and downstream surface water conditions. These disturbances affect both surface water quantity and quality."

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Highlights of December 6 Presentation of Chmura Study

- 130 - 150 people attended. A majority wore "Keep the Ban" stickers.

- A majority of the questions were clearly asked by citizens who support the ban.

- The Uranium Mining Sub-Committee did not ask a single question.

- There were numerous disclaimers throughout the presentation: "there is uncertainty as to whether this will occur; for the base line to occur our assumption have to hold true for decades; it is an assumption not a fact that the environmental standards will hold true; etc..."

- Chmura team admitted that at a price of $43 /lb the mine and mill site would no longer be profitable and would shut down. A price under $50/lb would mean only a 20 year life of the mine (vs 35 year).

- $6 billion windfall is estimated in best case scenario (this assumes highest price of uranium @$75/lb)

- the loss of $11 billion is predicted in the worst case scenario

- Chmura team admitted that "no area like the Coles Hill site has been mined before so there is no apples to apples comparison regarding: real estate, agriculture, tourism, private schools, manufacturing".

- It would cost VA $2.5 million annually to run the uranium milling program if VA were to become an agreement state.

- Chmura team claimed the science on public health impact was "questionable" in the same breath that he said it is "unambiguously bad for you"

- Chmura admitted that no technology for liners has been fully tested

- According to Chmura, VUI's estimated $15 million remediation costs is underestimated and since there is no certainty as to the type of mining to be employed (underground vs open pit) and the lack of a tailings storage plan, the impacts and remediation costs can't be accurately predicted and could vary widely.

- Bond is supposed to cover the decommissioning, reclaiming and long-term maintenance. After reclamation the land is handed over to the state or US DOE, and if bond is understated the cost will be put on the taxpayer.

- Chmura admitted that hydrogeology at Coles Hill is complex and needs more studies.

- Puckett stated he believes there is a "significant difference between coal and uranium mining"

- When asked if there are any uranium mines that have met federal standards (their baseline scenario) Chmura said "NO"

- Chmura stated under the study's baseline scenario the project would be safe for residents and workers. Yet, they warned that the wildlife should be kept away from the site because wildlife might carry the radioactive material off site or ingest it. [what is safe for humans is deadly for wildlife?]

- At the end of the presentation, where Chmura pointed our the RTI Study that is due shortly might be different from their study because everyone has a different perception of the stigma involved in mining.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Complete List of Localities and Groups Opposing Lifting of the Ban on Uranium Mining in VA

City of Creedmor, NC
City of Henderson, NC
City of Virginia Beach, VA
Floyd County, VA
Halifax County, NC
Granville County, NC
Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments
Brunswick County, VA
Mecklenburg County, VA
Orange County, VA
Rappahannock County, VA
Town of Clarksville
Town of Halifax, VA
Town of Hurt, VA
Town of Butner, NC
Town of Franklinton, NC
Town of Warrenton, NC
Vance County, NC
Warren County, NC
Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League
Piedmont Residents in Defense of the Environment (PRIDE)
Buggs Island Striper Club
Halifax County Chamber of Commerce (VA)
Martinsville-Henry County Chapter of the NAACP
Medical Society of Virginia House of Delegates 2008
National Wildlife Federation
North Carolina Roanoke River Basin Advisory Committee
North Carolina Wildlife Federation
Roanoke Rapids Sanitary District
Southside Concerned Citizens
Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts
Keep the Ban, Chesapeake
Keep the Ban, Norfolk
UBAN, Floyd County (VA)
Roanoke Group of the Sierra Club
Sierra Club Keep the Ban Team, Martinsville
Dan River Basin Association
League of Individuals for the Environment, Inc.
Roanoke River Basin Association
Piedmont Environmental Council
Sierra Club-Virginia Chapter
Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project
Southern Environmental Law Center
Virginia Bass Federation
Virginia Conservation Network
Virginia League of Conservation Voters

Sunday, April 10, 2011


This is to clarify some misconceptions about the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) study of uranium mining currently underway.

Firt, the
NAS study is simply not designed to provide the depth of information that needed to determine whether mining can be done safely in Virginia. This is not a reflection on the NAS National Research Council or on the qualifications of the panel members. The scope of the NAS study calls for secondary research, a review of the literature and experiences with mining elsewhere. The statement of work reflects the dual constraints of budget and timing, i.e., completion in time for the 2012 session of the Virginia General Assembly.

Without the more costly primary research, i.e., longer-term studies of actual sites where mining could occur in Virginia, key questions related to risks of mining, tailings waste storage and groundwater impacts in Virginia 's climate and hydrology will remain unanswered when the NAS study committee completes its work. For example, for mining risk assessment, an understanding of groundwater impacts by definition requires a site specific study.

Secondly, intensive study of the site appears to be needed to answer basic questions. According to
Dr. Sinha of Virginia Tech, a state of equilibrium characterizes part of the Coles Hill site (where rocks, ore and water are moving in a closed system without migration to ground and surface water). Dr. Sinha stated that no one knows what will happen when the overburden is removed. He indicated that a robust study of several years would be needed to model changes, such as migration of water through the strata, etc. if the current state of equilibrium is altered.

Third, a substantive study of uranium tailings risks and containment cell monitoring and maintenance is not expressly included in the NAS study scope of work. Tailings are mentioned only in the context of identifying best management practices in recent decades and are not mentioned along with the examination of other phases of uranium mining, milling, processing and reclamation in the statement of task.

Several geologists have emphasized that while mining, milling, processing and reclamation in Virginia raise questions, it is the tailings, the most enduring phase of the uranium mining lifecycle, that are most problematic: the very long-term storage and monitoring of enormous quantities of wastes containing radionuclides, chemicals and heavy metals. The responsibility for these wastes will ultimately pass to the taxpayer after the mining company shuts down -- with risks and costs to be passed along to future generations of Virginians.

Due to the decay chain, tailings wastes become more dangerous over time, according to international experts. There is concern regarding the lack of a track record with these materials and with the containment cells in Virginia 's climate and hydrology. Information needed to adequately assess risk is not available. Virginia Uranium Inc. in a letter to the City of Virginia Beach stated that VUI does not have information on tailings requested by the City. As we know, the City of Virginia Beach is attempting to assess the risks of upstream uranium mining operations and waste storage on downstream drinking water supplies. The City is, first and foremost, looking at the hazards of tailings storage in a region that is subject to heavy storms and flooding.

Virginia Uranium Inc. does not have answers to basic questions related to water - quantity needed; source of water; quantity, quality of wastewater; treatment, discharge of wastewater. With the NAS study scope as written, these most basic of questions will likely remain unanswered.

There is no study underway that will provide by 2012 the information needed to determine whether uranium mining can be done in the Commonwealth of Virginia in a manner that safeguards Virginia 's people and environment.

With recent events in Japan , assumptions related to risk assessment and safety are called into question. The market for the product is changing. Even China , the growth market for uranium, is, according to reports, taking a closer look at its plans for nuclear expansion.

The conservative stance is to support keeping the ban - to stay the course, given what we know -- and, more importantly, don't know.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011



From: Peter Pommerenk
To: "pwales@vauinc.com"
Date: Tue, 8 Feb 2011 13:00:58 -0500
Subject: Information on Uranium Mill Tailings

Dear Mr. Wales,

According to recent media reports following our release of the uranium mining impact study, you stated that you would be able to share data and information about the "amount and type of material that will be present at the Coles Hill site." We are delighted to hear this and would like to take you up on this offer.

We are particularly interested in any primary sources that could provide insight into the chemical and radiological composition of the tailings and the properties of the solids (e.g., grain size distributions, etc.) that might be generated at Coles Hill. In addition, even though we have retained expertise on contemporary mill tailings containment construction, any preliminary information regarding this aspect of your venture would be helpful to us in order to narrow down the potential impact scenarios in our model simulations. More specifically, we are looking for the following:
Containment structure:
* Location
* Site plans
* Design information: surface area, volume, height of the dam above= the original ground elevation, type of the dam, method of construction (standard dam, or if gradually raised upstream method, downstream method, or centerline method), collection of liquids and seepage, operation rules, etc.

* Geotechnical information Tailings:
* Uranium leaching method (acid or alkaline) and test results
* Pulp density of tailings when pumping from the mill to the containment cell
* Expected pulp density of tailings when impounded
* Total unit weight or density of the tailings (solid-liquid mixture)
* Grain size distribution (tailings)
* Dry density of tailings * Cohesivity (if any)
* Bingham plastic viscosity, Bingham yield strength (if available)
* Radioactivity content in tailings (Gross-Alpha/Beta, Ra-226/228 and Th-230/232 in sands, slimes, and liquids)
* Residual uranium content in sands, slimes and liquids expected to be in the tailings
* Any data on other toxic matter, if available, their initial concentration in sands, slimes and liquids (such as arsenic, lead, etc.)

We greatly appreciate your cooperation in this matter and are looking forward to hearing from you within the next 30 days. Thank you.

Peter Pommerenk, Ph.D., P.E.
City of Virginia Beach Public Utilities/Engineering Division Planning & Analysis


From: Walt Coles, Sr. [mailto:wcolessr@vauinc.com]
Sent: Wednesday, February 23, 2011 8:51 AM
To: Tom Leahy
Cc: Peter Pommerenk; pwales@vauinc.com

Dear Tom,

This email is in response to Peter Pommerenk's email to Patrick Wales dated February 8, 2011. As I offered to you at the NAS meeting in Danville, we would be delighted for you and others to visit with us at our office and the Coles Hill site. We feel this would provide more of a hands-on approach to Virginia Uranium's work and on-site observations. Such a meeting would provide opportunity for both parties to exchange various points of information and objectives. At that time, we would be happy to provide you with selected old data created by Marline in the 1980-92s. I hope that you will consider this offer.

In regard to current data and Peter's list of specific data requests, most of that data has not yet been generated and is not expected in the near term.

Please let me know if you would like to set up a time for a visit and we look forward to working with you.



From: Tom Leahy
To: "Walt Coles, Sr."
CC: Peter Pommerenk , "pwales@vauinc.com" , Marilyn Crane Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2011 12:50:31 -0500

Dear Walter,

Thank you for your response to Peter Pommerenk's request for information. Peter's request for information was fairly specific. Unfortunately, you have indicated that VUI has little if any of the requested information and that you do not expect to have any in the near term. Given this situation, I do not believe that much would be accomplished by assembling our team of experts at Coles Hill at this time. As most of our technical team are under contract, it would be very costly in terms of both time and money.

However, I will note that Patrick Wales has previously offered to provide copies of the Marline Report to both Virginia Beach and the NAS Uranium Committee. We have the main body of the Marline Report (Volumes 1-3) but we would appreciate a copy of the 14 appendices (Volumes 4-8). Virginia Beach would be more than happy to pay the cost of reproduction. It may be that the Marline Report will have the information we need and this will be the most efficient way to respond to our request for information. After we review the remaining volumes, we would be in a better position to discuss the potential benefits of a meeting at Coles Hill.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What Is Joe Q. Public Waiting For?

Virginia Uranium, Inc., Virginia legislators, local elected officials and area business leaders have been telling Joe Q. Public to "wait for the study" by the National Academy of Sciences to see whether or not uranium mining can be done safely. It has been stated on numerous occasions that the NAS study WILL NOT determine whether or not mining can be done safely in VA. So, for what exactly are we waiting?

While John Q. obediently continues to "wait for the study", VUI is wining and dining Virginia's legislators, flying them to France and Canada to see "reclaimed" uranium mines and making generous political contributions. They're lobbying legislators to lift the uranium mining ban and pass favorable regulations in the 2012 session of the General Assembly. According to a recent news article by Steve Szkotak, VUI has successfully pocketed some legislators. Their pockets are deep and appear to be filling quickly. Walter Coles Jr. says said Virginia Uranium has lined up sponsors of the legislation to lift the ban. Who are these legislators? This illustrates how little meaning the NAS study has to legislators. They don't care about the results. It's becoming evident that the NAS study, initiated by the Coal and Energy Commission and paid for by VUI is merely a diversion so VUI can buy legislators while urging you to "wait for the study".

VUI is ramming this study through and is pushing for a vote before the NAS or other reports can be adequately reviewed. According to contract, the NAS study will conclude on December 15, 2011. The General Assembly convenes on January 11, 2012. How many legislators can pull off work, family and holiday obligations plus read, digest, formulate questions and receive answers regarding a document of purported importance such as the NAS document in that short amount of time? None.

What are you waiting for, John Q.? No one else is.

Karen B. Maute

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Virginia Uranium Inc. Claims It Has VA Legislators and Governor in Their Pocket

Today, on March 1, 2011, Virginia Uranium Inc., its sole shareholder Virginia Uranium Holdings, a Yukon-based privately held company, and Virginia Energy Resources, a Canadian publicly traded company that owns 30% of the infamous Coles Hill deposit, gave a presentation to the Wall Street crowd in its pursuit of investors.

The presentation was webcast.

@ 41:50 -- “In January of 2012, we will have a bill in the state legislature that directs the [Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy] to develop the regulations on uranium mining.”
@42’00” – -- QUESTION: “Who is introducing that bill?” Answer: “We have had a number of legislators who have offered to do such. I don’t think we’ll know who is going to introduce the bill until we get very close to the beginning of the legislative session. We have a team of lobbyists in the state capitol. We’ve got a public relations firm in the state capitol. We are taking legislators on trips to see reclaimed uranium mines in France and up in Canada. We have a grassroots educational effort underway in the local community. So we’re not sitting still while the NAS study is going on. We are doing everything we can to make sure legislators thoroughly understand this issue and are able to be supportive of what we’re trying to do in the next session.”
@ 43’30” – “Our governor likes to say that Virginia is already a nuclear hub and we can build on it by being more vertically integrated.”

On February 1, 2011, at Americas’ Resources Investment Congress, London, U.K., Walter Coles, Jr. stated that:

@ 17’09” – “I talked to the lead geologist [who discovered Rabbit Lake in Canada] … and he hit on this crazy idea of going to the East Coast of the United States. And two years later, that same team made the discovery of Coles Hill. And talking to the lead geologist, he is insistent to this day that Coles Hill is the first of more major discoveries in Virginia that might lead to another Athabasca [Canada] style resource play.”

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Americans for Prosperity is a Virginia Uranium, Inc. Agent

Residents in Southside and South Central Virginia have been receiving automated message calls from Americans for Prosperity. The calls originated from AFP's Richmond office. AFP claimed that Virginia Uranium, Inc.'s dangerous project will generate up to 500 jobs. It is a LIE.
According to the Energy Informaion Administration, in 2009, the entire uranium production industry employed 1,096 people.
In the same year, there were 20 operating mines in the U.S. and one operating and one developing mill. No single mining and milling operation can employ one half of the number of employees being currently employed by 22 uranium production operations.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Hank Davis - 19th District Candidate for VA Senate Seat Answers Tough Questions

A large number of citizens have contacted Bill Stanley, a 19th District candidate for the VA Senate seat, with various questions. Mr. Stanley never responded, raising suspicions among cncerned citizens that Mr. Stanley is not a real person.

Luckily, Davis Hank, the other candidate for the VA Senate seat from the 19th District responded promptly to all questions. His answers are below.

1) What is your opinion regarding the potential lifting of the current ban on uranium mining in Virginia? (If possible, elaborate further than to "wait for the study".)

I am opposed to uranium mining and milling in Virginia and will not vote to lift the ban.

2) What implications do you forsee for Virginia if the current ban on uranium mining is lifted?

I see social and economic disaster for the 19th District, not to mention great health concerns where the mine is located.

3) The current NAS study will not determine if mining and milling can be done safely in VA. When the report is finalized it will be up to the General Assembly to vote "yea" or "nay" regarding the ban. What opportunity is there for citizens to publically review and comment onthe NAS report prior to a vote by the GA?

I do not know what final citizen review will be available other than legislative committee's hearing which I am sure will be public.

4) What factors will ultimately determine your vote regarding whether or not to mine uranium in Virginia?

The safety, health and socioeconomic factors will determine my vote as well as my awareness of the opinions of my constituents.

5) Should any of the other studies being done be considered by the General Assembly and what weight should be given to them?

All relevant studies should be considered. Each one will have to be evaluated based on their content and completeness.

Thanks for the opportunity to answer your questions!


Monday, August 23, 2010


Although the 20-day public comment period ended on August 18, 2010, the National Academy of Sciences continues to accept comments on the composition of the provisional committee that will study the feasibility of uranium mining in Virginia. The deadline has been extended until the first committee meeting, which is yet to be scheduled. The comment period was extended in response to 120 requests for extenstion of time received by NAS from various public interest groups and concerned citizens.

You can sign on the comments prepared by UraniumFree Virginia by sending your name and location to uraniumfreeVA@gmail.com or you can send separate comments on the provisional appointments directly to the study director Dr. David Feary at dfeary@nas.edu

Committee Membership Information

Project Title: Uranium Mining in Virginia


Major Unit: Division on Earth and Life Studies

Sub Unit: Board on Earth Sciences & Resources
Water Science and Technology Board

RSO: Feary, David

Subject/Focus Area: Earth Sciences

Committee Membership

Date Posted: 07/29/2010

Dr. Joaquin Ruiz - (Chair)
University of Arizona

JOAQUIN RUIZ is Executive Dean of the Colleges of Letters, Arts and Science, Dean of the College of Science, and a Professor of Geosciences at the University of Arizona. Prior to being appointed as Dean of the College of Science, Dr. Ruiz served as the Head of the University of Arizona’s Department of Geosciences from 1995 to 2000. Dr. Ruiz is an expert in radiogenic isotopes applied to the study of regional tectonics, origin of magmas, and hydrothermal ore deposits. He was elected to the Mexican Academy of Science in 2006. He has served as a member of the U.S. National Committee for the International Association for Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior; a member of the National Science Foundation’s Instrumentation Panel with the Division on Earth Sciences; and was a panel member of the Facilities Program and Centers for Excellence in Science and Technology Program with the Directorate of Education. Dr. Ruiz is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America and of the Society of Economic Geologists. He received a B.Sc. in Geology and a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Miami and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Geology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Dr. Corby G. Anderson
Colorado School of Mines

CORBY ANDERSON is the Harrison Western Professor of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines. Dr. Anderson is an expert in the fields of mineral processing, waste minimization and recycling, has an extensive background in industrial-oriented research, and has more than 30 years of academic and applied experience in mining, chemical, and materials engineering. In 2008 he received the Milton Wadsworth Award from SME for his contributions to advance the field of chemical metallurgy. Dr. Anderson holds a Ph.D. in Mining Engineering - Metallurgy from the University of Idaho, as well as a Bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering and a Masters degree in Metallurgical Engineering.

Dr. Lawrence W. Barnthouse
LWB Environmental Services, Inc.

LAWRENCE W. BARNTHOUSE is the President and Principal Scientist of LWB Environmental Services, Inc. His consulting activities include 316(b) demonstrations for nuclear and non-nuclear power plants, Superfund ecological risk assessments, Natural Resource Damage Assessments, risk-based environmental restoration planning, and a variety of other projects involving close interactions with regulatory and resource management agencies. Dr. Barnthouse has authored or co-authored more than 90 publications relating to ecological risk assessment. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Hazard/Risk Assessment Editor of the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, and Founding Editorial Board Member of the new journal Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management. He has served on the National Research Council Board of Environmental Studies and Toxicology and on several National Research Council committees, and was a member of the peer review panel for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Guidelines for Ecological Risk Assessment. Dr. Barnthouse holds a PhD in biology from the University of Chicago.

Dr. Scott C. Brooks
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

SCOTT C. BROOKS is Senior Scientist in the Environmental Sciences Division of Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Dr. Brooks’ research focuses on the biogeochemistry of advecting fluids in the subsurface and the geochemical factors influencing the fate and transport of solutes. He has conducted numerous experiments at the laboratory and field scale studying the fate and transformation of radionuclides in the environment. He has Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Environmental Sciences from the University of Virginia.

Dr. Patricia A. Buffler
University of California, Berkeley

PATRICIA BUFFLER (IOM) is professor of epidemiology and holds the Kenneth and Marjorie Kaiser Chair in Cancer Epidemiology in the School of Public Health at University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Buffler’s research interests include the environmental causes of cancer, especially gene-environment interaction and childhood cancer, lung cancer, leukemia, brain cancer, and breast cancer; epidemiologic research methods; and the uses of epidemiologic data in health policy. She has served on numerous committees of the National Research Council, including the Committee on Health Risks from Exposure to Low Levels of Ionizing Radiation, and Committee on Emerging Issues and Data on Environmental Contaminants. Dr. Buffler was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1994. She received a Ph.D. in epidemiology from the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Michel Cuney

MICHEL CUNEY is director of the research team, Genesis and Management of Mineral Resources for the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) at the Henri Poincaré Universite in Nancy, France. He has worked mainly on the geochemistry of uranium in various geological environments since 1972. He has visited and/or worked on most major uranium deposits of the world, and has published about 180 scientific papers in this disciplinary area. Dr. Cuney is one of the world's experts on the genesis of uranium deposits and uranium geology, and he will provide invaluable insights concerning mining techniques that would be used to extract uranium from deposits in Virginia as well as the possible effects on the local environment. Dr. Cuney received his Docteur es Sciences (Ph.D.) degree from Henri Poincaré Universite.

Dr. Peter L. deFur
Environmental Stewardship Concepts

PETER L. DEFUR is President of Environmental Stewardship Concepts, LLC (ESC), an independent private consulting firm in Richmond, Virginia. He is also an affiliate Associate Professor at the Center for Environmental Studies, Virginia Commonwealth University where he conducts research on environmental health and ecological risk assessment. Dr. deFur has over thirty years’ experience providing technical services regarding the cleanup of contaminated sites to community organizations across the country. Dr. deFur received B.S. and M.S. degrees from the College of William and Mary, and a Ph.D. in biology from the University of Calgary.

Dr. Mary R. English
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

MARY ENGLISH is a Senior Fellow at the Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment, The University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She is a social scientist who is familiar with the environmental effects of mining and related regulatory issues. Her work has focused on energy and environmental policy and has included research on mechanisms for involving stakeholders in public policy decisions, how "the community" should be defined within the context of community-based environmental efforts, information-gathering and analytic tools to improve environmental decision making, and guidance on conducting socioeconomic impact assessments. She previously served on the NRC Board on Radioactive Management as well as the NRC Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology. Dr. English has a M.S. from the University of Massachusetts and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

Dr. R. William Field
University of Iowa College of Public Health

R. WILLIAM FIELD is a Professor in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health and in the Department of Epidemiology, University of Iowa College of Public Health. He also serves as Director of the Occupational Epidemiology Training Program, at the NIOSH-Heartland Center for Occupational Health and Safety, and Director of the Pulmonary Outcomes Cluster, NIEHS - Environmental Health Sciences Research Center (EHSRC). Dr. Field has been active in numerous national and international collaborative radiation-related epidemiolgic projects for many years and has served on the editorial boards of several national and international scientific journals.. His research interests fall into the broad categories of environmental epidemiology, occupational epidemiology, radioepidemiology, cancer epidemiology, immune-mediated disease epidemiology, health physics, biomonitoring, risk perception, and novel methods of retrospective exposure assessment. Dr. Field received his Ph.D. in preventive medicine and environmental health from the University of Iowa.

Dr. Jill Lipoti
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection

JILL LIPOTI is Director of the Division of Environmental Safety and Health at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Prior to assuming this position, she was an Assistant Director with responsility for directing the state’s radiation protection programs. Dr. Lipoti also serves as adjunct assistant professor, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey - School of Public Health, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, specializing in radiation exposure, and preparedness for chemical and radiological emergencies. She has provided advice to the International Atomic Energy Agency regarding radiation safety and security, and has served on the Radiation Advisory Committee of EPA’s Science Advisory Board. She has M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in environmental science from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Dr. Paul A. Locke
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

PAUL A. LOCKE, an environmental health scientist and attorney, is an Associate Professor at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Division of Toxicology. He holds an MPH from Yale University School of Medicine, a DrPH from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health and a JD degree from Vanderbilt University School of Law. Dr. Locke’s research and practice focus on how decision makers use environmental health science and toxicology in regulation and policy-making and how environmental health sciences influence the policy-making process. His areas of study include designing and evaluating radiation protection initiatives and radiation policies, especially in the areas of low dose radiation science, radon risk reduction, safe disposal of high level radioactive waste, and use of CT as a diagnostic screening tool. Dr. Locke directs the School’s Doctor of Public Health program in Environmental Health Sciences. Dr. Locke was a member of the National Academy of Sciences Nuclear and Radiation Studies Board from 2003 to 2009, and has served on five National Research Council committees. He is also a member of the editorial boards of Risk Analysis: An International Journal and the International Journal of Low Radiation and is on the Board of Directors of the NCRP (National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements). He is admitted to practice law in the states of New York and New Jersey, the District of Columbia, the Southern District Court of New York and the United States Supreme Court.

Mr. Henry Schnell
Areva, Inc.

HENRY A. SCHNELL holds the position of Technical Authority (Senior Expert) in the Expertise & Technical Department, Mining Business Unit, with AREVA NC Inc., In his role as Technical Authority for uranium, he is responsible for review and support of existing operations and new projects world wide, and for final technical authorization of plant design and modifications. Mr. Schnell has 41 years of experience in management, plant operations, plant design, engineering, and research and development in mining and ore treatment, and 21 years of this has been specializing in uranium metallurgy, operations, and mining projects. He has a B.S. (Honours) degree from the University of Alberta, Edmonton and other extensive training in metallurgy and project management.

Dr. Jeffrey J. Wong
California Environmental Protection Agency

JEFFREY J. WONG is Deputy Director of the Science, Pollution Prevention and Technology Program for the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) at the California EPA and serves as DTSC's Chief Scientist. This program's activities include environmental measurements, biological and exposure monitoring, toxicology and risk assessment, and green chemistry and pollution prevention. Before his current appointment Dr. Wong served as chief of DTSC's Human and Ecological Risk Division. He served by presidential appointment on the U.S. Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board from 1996 until 2002. Dr. Wong has served on several National Academies committees, including the Committee on Risk-Based Approaches for Disposition of Transuranic and High-Level Radioactive Waste, the Committee on Environmental Remediation at Naval Facilities, the Committee on Remedial Action Priorities for Hazardous Waste Sites and the Panel for Review of the DOE Environmental Restoration Priority System. Dr. Wong received his Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology from the University of California at Davis.