Uranium Traffic In Saskatchewan

Year Published:  1982  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX2610

Abstract:  "Uranium mining in northern Saskatchewan is destroying the people and the land locally and threatening the rest of the world with accidents and nuclear war." Both the provincial and federal governments are deeply involved in the expansion by maintaining partial or complete mine ownereship. This tabloid outlines the effects of the uranium industry on the land and native population of northern Saskatchewan, the dangers of uranium transportation, and the industry's connections with militarism and the Third World.

The local impact of a uranium mine is devastating. According to the report: "....the land is destroyed to such an extent that it cannot be used by people for thousands of years. The U.S. government now refers to the vicinity of a uranium mine as a 'national sacrifice area.' Uranium mining (also) contributes to the destruction of indigenous people in almost every country where it is mined. In northern Saskatchewan they have been forced off the land and given dangerous jobs in the mines. The Indian people, apparently, are also regarded as a 'national sacrifice.'

The dangers extend beyond northern Saskatchewan because yellowcake, the final product from a uranium mill, passes through many communities on its way to the U.S. and Port Hope, Ontario, where it is further refined. A railway or highway accident would threaten the health of many because cancer can result from the exposure to yellowcake, though the latency period may be as long as 10 to 30 years."

The uranium mined in northern Saskatchewan is linked to nuclear energy and the arms race internationally. In 1979, almost half of Saskatchewan's uranium went to the United States. The U.S. continues to test nuclear armaments at its underground testing site in Nevada (every three and a half weeks, they detonate a bomb up to five times the size of the one dropped on Hiroshima). Several American corporations are also involved in the export of nuclear equipment and technology to repressive regimes such as those in South Africa, Brazil, South Korea, and the Phillipines. Canada also exports Candu technology to the Third World. In all, more than 17 countries recieve uranium from northern Saskatchewan.

This tabloid lists 23 groups and publications devoted to a halt in uranium exploration and extraction.

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