Aquifer debate continues
Aug. 1, 2011 at 3:01 a.m.
The Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public meeting Thursday in Goliad to hear concerns about water exemptions for uranium mining.
Residents of Goliad, including the Goliad County Groundwater Conservation District, are in their fifth year battling against an aquifer exemption for Uranium Energy Corp. to drill in the Gulf Coast Aquifer.
According to section 40 of the EPA's Code of Federal Regulations, an exemption may be granted for a portion of an aquifer if it does not currently serve as a source of drinking water.
An aquifer cannot be exempt if it will at any time serve as a source of drinking water. Exempt aquifers are not good for human consumption because of the high mineral content, according to the regulations.
UEC maintains Goliad's drinking water is not fit for human consumption and that the company should be allowed to mine and contaminate it.
A portion of the aquifer UEC wants exempted to conduct in-situ uranium mining supplies drinking water to Goliad County.