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Proposed uranium mine in Virginia faces uphill battle

Virginia Uranium is poised to bring economic prosperity in the form of jobs and increased tax revenues to Pittslyvania County, according to supporters. Geologists estimate that 119 million pounds of uranium ore rest below the 3,500 acre property known as Cole Hill. Several hurdles, including business litigation, stand in the way of development.

Virginia Uranium has a strong economic case for the mine, and this will factor into the political and judicial considerations. Business litigation is likely to focus on the potential for environmental damage. The company's ability to explain without oversimplifying safety procedures in terms that non-experts understand will be critical.

A mixture of farming interests, activist groups and concerned citizens want the 1982 moratorium on uranium mining to stay in place. Before the mining operation can commence, the Virginia legislature must negotiate regulations overturning the moratorium, and Cole Hill must be rezoned by the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors. Once these hurdles are passed, Virginia Uranium may continue to face litigation capable of stalling or even eliminating the possibility of the proposed mine.

From small businesses to large corporations, business and commercial litigation is a fact of life. Virginia Uranium is in the somewhat unique position of having to show that radioactive mining on the East coast can be done safely. Successful defense in court still hinges on the ability of attorneys to explain technically complex matters to non-experts without oversimplifying the issues. Whether the subject is environmental threats, breach of contract, partnership disputes or another problem requiring litigation, an attorney with business and commercial law experience may be able to help you reach an amicable conclusion.

Source:, "Company's bid to mine uranium in Virginia sparks economic hopes, environmental fears," The Associated Press, Jan. 27, 2013

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