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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
Rawlins Field Office
 
Release Date: 08/17/12
Contacts: Serena Baker,    
  307-212-0197    

Lost Creek Uranium Project Final EIS Available


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Rawlins Field Office today released the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for a proposed uranium in situ recovery project in Sweetwater County approximately 40 miles northwest of Rawlins, Wyo. 

The Lost Creek Uranium In Situ Recovery Project area contains approximately 4,377 acres within the project boundary, with no more than 345 acres actual surface disturbance. Most of the surface disturbance would be related to construction of the well fields used to extract the uranium from the site. Historically, the nearby Jeffery City area has been mined for uranium since the 1950s, but a price drop in the 1980s halted production. 

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued Lost Creek ISR, LLC a license in August 2011. The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality issued the project a permit in October 2011. 

The proposal is to develop and recover uranium by the in situ mining process, a low impact mining technique that has significantly less environmental impacts than open pit mining. Solution is injected into a bore hole to dissolve the mineral, then the solution bearing mineral is pumped back to the surface for processing. The proponent estimates the current mineral resource for the Lost Creek project and the surrounding property is 8.3 million pounds. Planned facilities include well pads for injection, production and monitoring, wellhead houses, a central processing facility, an access road network and pipeline system. 

Wyoming contains the largest known uranium ore reserves in the United States and has been the nation’s leading producer of uranium ore since 1995, according to the Wyoming State Geological Survey. Since 1991, all Wyoming uranium has been recovered by the in situ recovery method, sometimes referred to as in situ leach. 

The BLM selects the Drying Yellowcake On-Site Alternative as the preferred alternative in the Final EIS. This action involves drying the mineral solution into a solid yellowcake form. Housing the drying-packing facility within the processing plant will reduce shipments from the site, resulting in fewer transportation-related impacts, fewer wildlife disturbances, and cleaner air quality.  

The Final EIS is not a decision document. A Record of Decision is expected to be signed after the Final EIS availability period closes. Written comments on the Final EIS will be accepted until Sept. 17. Comments may be emailed to Lost_Crk_Mine_WY@blm.gov, faxed to 307-328-4224, or mailed to the BLM Rawlins Field Office, Lost Creek Final EIS Comment, P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For further information, please contact John Russell at 307-328-4252.  

Note to editor: A link to a map of the proposed project can be found at www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/info/NEPA/documents/rfo/lostcreek.html.  



The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.
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Rawlins Field Office   1300 N. Third Street      Rawlins, WY 82301   

Last updated: 08-17-2012