Jason S. Miyares
Attorney General of Virginia

Image of the Virginia AG Seal

Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of the Attorney General

Mark Herring
Attorney General

202 North Ninth Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219


For media inquiries only, contact:  
Michael Kelly, Director of Communications
Phone: (804)786-5874 
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~ Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals affirms lower court's decision that upheld Virginia's statutory moratorium on uranium mining ~


RICHMOND (February 17, 2017)-Today the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond ruled in favor of the Commonwealth's thirty year moratorium on mining uranium in the Commonwealth. The majority of a three judge panel found that nothing in the federal Atomic Energy Act preempts the state's ability to regulate and restrict conventional uranium mining within its borders.


"For more than thirty years the General Assembly has maintained a moratorium on the mining of uranium in the Commonwealth for the safety and well-being of our residents, lands, and waterways," said Attorney General Herring. "This ruling affirms that the Commonwealth is well within its rights to regulate mining activities, and I'm glad we were able to yet again successfully defend Virginia's environment and moratorium in court."


In December 2015, a federal judge dismissed a suit challenging the Commonwealth's moratorium on uranium. Today's ruling upheld that dismissal as proper.


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