(Neb)-Draft NRC Report Finds No Significant Impact From Crow Butte Mine Expansion
CRAWFORD - The Nuclear Regulatory Commission last month issued its draft environmental assessment for the Marsland Expansion of the Crow Butte Resources uranium mine southeast of Crawford with a draft finding that it would cause no significant impact and that there is no need for a more extensive environmental impact statement.
The federal agency is taking public comment on the assessment and finding by mail and email through the 29th of this month. Copies of the draft EA are available at the Chadron and Crawford Public Libraries.
Crow Butte, part of Canada-based Cameco Resources, first began the licensing process for the Marlsand Expansion in 2012. The licensed area would cover more than 4,600 acres but only about 500 are proposed for actual operations...which would include 11 individual mine units, a satellite processing unit, up to 6 disposal wells, and access roads.
Mining would be essentially identical to the in-situ method at the 30-year old original mine, which pumps a chemical solution similar to bicarbonate of soda into the aquifer to free molecules of uranium from the soil. Water is then pumped back to the surface for processing.
The satellite processing unit would remove the uranium from the water for further processing at the main mine.
The NRC staff assessed the potential environmental impacts from the construction, operation, aquifer restoration, and decommissioning of the proposed expansion as well as the cumulative impacts from past, present, and reasonably foreseeable future actions in finding only small impacts would occur that would not significantly affect the quality of the human environment.
You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
Federal Rulemaking website: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2012-0281.
Mail comments to: May Ma, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: OWFN-2-A13, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.
Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-415-3463; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov.
For technical questions, contact the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document.
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