Monday, the state water management board heard from people passionate to keep uranium mining out of the area, and others who favor it.
The second of two hearings on the Dewey Burdock mine project began Monday at the Best Western Ramkota in Rapid City with testimony from dozens of people. At the conclusion of the hearing, the board will have to decide whether to issue water use permits to the Canadian Mining Company, Powertech. The debate is nothing new. Those opposed say the mining could contaminate the ground water supplies.
One woman who testified Monday told the board that the mining could impact tourism in the southern hills, particularly Hot Springs. Sarah Peterson says the Fall River is fed by the Madison Aquifer, which would be used in the mining process. She worries the Fall River will dry up as a result of the mining and have grave effects on the area. "Our property values will fall, we will lose tourism dollars and our hospitable town will dry up too," Peterson said.
The mine would be about 15 miles northwest of Edgemont on around 11,000 acres around the old towns of Dewey and Burdock.