Uranium isn’t new to Virginia – you might even consider it an old friend of our Commonwealth. We’re home to:
- 2 nuclear reactors at North Anna Nuclear Generating Station and 2 more at the Surry Nuclear Power Plant provide Virginians with about 40% of our electricity.
- A Babcock & Wilcox nuclear processing facility in Lynchburg that handles highly enriched uranium.
- Norfolk is home to the highest concentration of naval nuclear reactors in the world: 6 nuclear aircraft carriers and 7 nuclear submarines that are both fueled with weapons grade uranium.
All this nuclear activity is made possible by uranium, and yet barely anyone realizes that it surrounds them because the nuclear industry is well-regulated and maintains world-class safety standards.
Given Virginia’s longstanding relationship with uranium and our abundance of nuclear facilities and reactors, I’d say we’ve earned the title “Nuclear Capital of the East Coast.”
So, what exactly is the problem with uranium mining?