Letter — Gold study listening session May 25

Published 1:33 pm Friday, May 20, 2022

To the Editor:

Thanks to Erica Schoenberger for the excellent article, published in The Farmville Herald May 10 edition, about risks and rewards of gold mining in our area. She states that the principal risks are environmental. These include acid mine drainage, cyanide spills and the failure of tailings storage dams.

We have an amazing opportunity, right here in Buckingham County, to speak about our concerns directly to the people who are making decisions in regards to the risks that Dr. Schoenberger outlined in her article.

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The National Academies of Sciences (NAS) is studying the impacts gold mining would have on Virginia. The NAS committee is having an in-person listening session on Wednesday, May 25, 7-9 p.m. at the Buckingham County Community Center located in the public library in Dillwyn and they want to hear from us.

A group of Buckingham residents has come up with a unique solution to this challenge in the form of a proposed ordinance to protect the health and safety of the residents and the environment of Buckingham County. It is a common sense ordinance that will protect us from being a “sacrifice zone.” You can sign a petition to support the ordinance at this link: bit.ly/bhamord

I wish I didn’t have to speak out, testifying and telling the people in power my thoughts. But I will get off the sofa, get in my car and get myself to this meeting to sign up for my three minutes to let these people know — I am concerned. I want them to know about the ordinance. Our rural way of life is in jeopardy.

Nelson Bailey