Uranium One, a Canadian company steeped in controversy over its proposed purchase by a Russian mining conglomerate, is divesting itself of its Colorado mining interests. Uranium One vice president of conventional mining, Norman Schwab said we’re not into waiting for years for sentiment to change, so in terms of work in Colorado we’ve dropped the various properties and we’re focusing in Utah and Arizona and other states that are pro-mining. It’s as simple as that.
The 1872 Mining Law, signed by Presidentto encourage rapid development and settlement of the American West, dictates “Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That all valuable mineral deposits in lands belonging to the United States, both surveyed and unsurveyed, are hereby declared to be free and open to exploration and purchase, and the lands in which they are found to occupation and purchase, by citizens of the United States and those who have declared their intention to become such, under regulations prescribed by law, and according to the local customs or rules of miners, in the several mining-districts, so far as the same are applicable and not inconsistent with the laws of the United States.”
U.S. lawmakers have objected to the purchase of Uranium One by Russian government-owned Atomredmetzoloto (ARMZ) for national security reasons. In a statement to the Colorado Independent, Colorado Sen., a proponent of reviving the nation’s moribund nuclear power industry, said the ARMZ sale needs to be watched closely. Politicians are concerned that uranium mined in Wyoming may wind up in Iran because ARMZ supplies that neighboring and highly unfriendly nation. Uranium One’s Schwab, a South African based in the company’s Denver office, called it fear-mongering to suggest highly regulated uranium will wind up in a rogue state.
Jeff Parsons, senior attorney for the Western Mining Action Project, says “the increase of foreign companies taking over mining interests in the United States is part of a trend over the last 20 years or so.” We are seeing more and more influx of foreign mining companies in Colorado and across the West.”