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Tony Lauria: Too smart to fall for mine mailer

Local resident Tony Lauria rails at Rise Gold's recent mailer to the community promising “a brighter future”. He marvels at how none of bad facts about deep bedrock gold mining ever get mentioned and wonders how in the world all the impacts on residents could be blissfully ignored.

Read in The Union.


I’m sending my recently received Rise Gold mailer straight to the Board of Supervisors with remarks saying I do not approve of letting this company bring back a dangerous industry for their profit. I think this is the best use for their response mailer.

Their pamphlet says, “a brighter future.” Is this a brighter future for our residential community? Eighty years of heavy industrial operations, blasting, drilling 24/7, draining millions of gallons of our groundwater, 36,000 massive diesel truckloads per year spewing exhaust into the air, silica dust and asbestos released from serpentine bedrock, toxic tailings piled higher than the trees, potential for wells to run dry with no alternative water source, home values possibly plummeting, constant unbearable noise possibly heard for miles around, wildlife displaced, Wolf Creek affected, contaminated material brought to the surface, energy use equivalent to 5,000 homes, endless dewatering in a drought, traffic congestion, transporting explosives through neighborhoods, storing explosives on site during wildfire season, residential communities subjected to the chance of constant vibrations and pollution.

Are the risks and realities something we want for our beautiful foothills? Heavy industrial operations have a legacy of severe impacts to humans and the environment. There is a reason deep bedrock gold mining ceased decades ago. Most mining sites are still contaminated with the results of those operations.

None of the facts we know about deep bedrock gold mining seem to be represented in the statements publicized by Rise Gold. I don’t see “safe” as a way to describe those operations. “Protecting our natural environment” has never been achieved by the gold mining industry. How can the exhaust of 100 daily diesel trucks loads be “minimized.” Why do they say “emergency service teams available to respond to emergency situations?” Is this alluding to the obvious, that mining operations are dangerous?

Nevada County is not “struggling to build a stronger economy.” Our county is booming with construction, housing projects, new retirement complexes, tech industry success, new shopping centers, small businesses and jobs.

In my opinion, we would exit the dark ages of the past, and avoid reopening the unsavory toxic legacy of gold mining. Can you imagine new tech, or any other progressive business, wanting to set up their base in a heavy industrial mining town? What comes to mind when you think of a mining town? Would that be a place you would want to live and raise a family?

Consider sending your mailer, in an envelope with a stamp, marked to oppose the mine, to: Eric Rood Administrative Center, Board of Supervisors 950 Maidu Ave., Nevada City, CA 95959. Or, send your own personal note to the Nevada Count Board of Supervisors.

Tony Lauria lives in Grass Valley.

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