Buckingham, VA – Groups from around the state expressed optimism today that the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS) has agreed to study the potential impacts of industrial gold mining on water resources, public health, and the environment in Virginia.

The NAS voted to conduct the study after the state Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy (now the Department of Energy, or DOE) reached out earlier this year as a result of Delegate Elizabeth Guzman’s legislation (HB 2213) establishing a work group to evaluate the impacts of potential large-scale gold mining in the Commonwealth. A final “statement of task” between the NAS and DOE was confirmed with the interest groups today, and the NAS has opened nominations for study committee members.

Friends of Buckingham — known for its work to protect Union Hill and Buckingham communities from the now-canceled Atlantic Coast Pipeline — has led the effort since last summer to raise awareness of the gold mining issue after learning that an exploratory company had been drilling core samples in Buckingham County for four years without the knowledge of community members or apparently of county officials.

Read the full article at Appalachian Voices.  Published August 6,2021

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