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Antiquated USA mining law allows free uranium grab by foreign companies

“The roots of the problem reach back to the 1872 mining law, which allows any claimholder, domestic or foreign, to mine on the majority of America’s public lands – and to take billions of dollars in minerals for free,”

Uranium deal with Russians shows need for mining reform, activists say « Colorado Independent By David O. Williams 11/29/10 ,Mining reform groups over the weekend reacted sharply to Wednesday’s decision by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (pdf) to allow the transfer of two uranium mining licenses in Wyoming to Atomoredzoloto (ARMZ), a firm controlled by the Russian state nuclear agency.

Several environmental policy groups, including the Western Mining Action Project in Colorado, have told The Colorado Independent that foreign companies are increasingly investing in mining operations on public lands in the United States because of a lack of royalties for hard-rock mining.

Jane Danowitz, U.S. public lands program director for Pew Environment Group, again calling for reform of the antiquated 1872 Mining Law, which was passed during the Ulysses S. Grant administration to spur development of the West.

“The roots of the problem reach back to the 1872 mining law, which allows any claimholder, domestic or foreign, to mine on the majority of America’s public lands – and to take billions of dollars in minerals for free,” Danowitz said.

“With national security and the federal deficit front and center, this is the time for Congress and the Obama administration to take a hard look at how Americans are literally giving away their valuable resources  and at where those resources are going.”

decision by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (pdf)

November 30, 2010 - Posted by | business and costs, Uranium, USA

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