I am writing in STRONG opposition to allowing unprecedented large-scale gold mining without regulatory safeguards in the Commonwealth. It would threaten our precious waterways like the James River, which is a drinking water source for MILLIONS of citizens. Also,, dangerous chemicals like cyanide are used in the mining process which could cause substantial negative impacts to communities both nearby and downstream from the mines. For these reasons, it is clear that the risks are too high. Water is the essence of life and clean water is critical for environmental and public health. To sacrifice all this, and cause irreparable damage, and even death, for the short term profits of the mining industry would be incredibly misguided and unconscionable.
I count on you to do the right thing for the citizens of our state, and prioritize our health and safety over the mining industry's profits derived from the exploitation of our wonderful natural resources. Thank you.