Earth Day Launch Of Campaign To Clean Up Toxic Mines

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Abandoned  Uranium Mining Clean Up Campaign to be Announced on Earth Day

Former Presidential Candidate to Attend

Rapid City, SD –  Defenders of the Black Hills and Clean Up The Mines are hosting an Earth Day media event to announce a nationwide campaign for clean up of all abandoned uranium mines in the United States.

Dr. Jill Stein, who ran for president in the 2012 election as a Green Party candidate will participate in the launch event. Stein is an organizer with the Global Climate Convergence which also launches on Earth Day. The Convergence includes over 200 actions in over 50 cities and serves to unite struggles across issues to take action “to change course” given the accelerating climate crisis. Stein chose to attend the launch of Clean Up the Mines to bring attention to this unrecognized national disaster which threatens the health of millions of Americans.

More than 10,000 abandoned uranium mines (AUMs) are located throughout the U.S. primarily in the Western States, and more than 10 million people live within a 50 mile radius of an abandoned uranium mine.

“These hazardous abandoned uranium mines poison the air, land and water.  The health effects are tremendous,” said Charmaine White Face, a volunteer with Clean Up The Mines and Coordinator of Defenders of the Black Hills.  “Currently no laws require clean up of these dangerous abandoned Uranium mines.  We are letting Congress know:  It is time to clean up the mines!”  Ms. White Face concluded.

South Dakota has at least 272 abandoned, open-pit Uranium mines: 169 AUMs in the Southwestern Black Hills near Edgemont,  and 103 AUMS in the Northwest corner near Buffalo. The Northern Great Plains Region of Montana, Wyoming, North and South Dakota contains more than 2,000 plus AUMs.

WHAT:  Earth Day media event to announce a national campaign for clean up of all abandoned Uranium mines in the United States.

WHEN:  10:00 AM (Mountain Time),  Tuesday,  April 22, 2014

WHERE:  Cheyenne River Bridge on SD Highway 40, located 15 miles Southeast of Hermosa, SD.

WHO:  Defenders of the Black Hills, Popular Resistance, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and Veterans for Peace.  Oglala Sioux and other Tribal officials are also invited to the Event as the Cheyenne River contamination impacts Red Shirt Village which is on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

VISUALS:  Colorful banners and signs saying, “Warning, Radioactive River” will be placed near the Cheyenne River Bridge to address the radioactive contamination of the Cheyenne River caused by AUMs.

>Clean Up The Mines (www.cleanupthemines.org) is a campaign to pass legislation through Congress to ensure clean up of hazardous abandoned uranium and other radioactive materials mines throughout the United States.

Defenders of the Black Hills (www.defendblackhills.org) is a group of volunteers without racial or tribal boundaries whose mission is to preserve, protect, and restore the environment in the Area of the 1851 and 1868 Treaties made between the United States and the Great Sioux Nation.