“Closed” uranium mine continuing to pollute and sell products internationally

This is a very important news lead. I believe this story is worth further investigation by both domestic Chinese and international media. Epoch Times has published an expose of one of China’s uranium plants, which has been dumping large quantity of radioactive nuclear wastewater into China’s main rivers, illegally selling radioactive equipment on the open market, and secretly selling uranium products on the international market.

In this report, published on August 6, several whistle blowers from the plant have revealed their identities, with their pictures attached, and included photos documenting their allegations. The original Chinese article is here.

Thanks to Professor Yu Maochun, who has sent this startling report to CDN’s attention and also summarized the Epoch Times report in English. He wrote: “If this report is true, and there are ample reasons to believe it is, Chinese authorities have a lot of explaining to do to its own people and to the international community on nuclear safety, especially nuclear proliferation and nuclear export control. We may also find out from these whistle blowers which country or group the plant has sold uranium products to, which obviously has much relevance in today’s world.”

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Here is Professor Yu’s summary: “One of China’s biggest uranium mining and enrichment plants in Gansu was closed by an order from Beijing in 2002 on account of uranium ore exhaustion. The entire plant was scheduled to close shop and hundreds of workers/engineers were let go. Beijing provided 270 million RMB to help settle the laid off workers.

The disgruntled workers soon began to organize and send a petition team to Beijing to accuse the local CCP bosses at the plant and in Gansu area of the following:


—-the uranium ore exhaustion report submitted by the plant’s bosses and Gansu local authorities, that eventually led to the closure order, was a false report to bamboozle Beijing. Instead, there is plenty of ore left un-mined. After the shop is ordered closed, the plant’s bosses and local officials immediately joined hands in hiring private miners to continue mining and enriching uranium and furtively, illegally sold “tons” of the enriched uranium products at the international market for huge profits;

—-since 1994, the plant, in violation of all sorts of nuclear safety rules, has furtively dumped enormous amount of radioactive water and materials into major rivers that have contaminated the Yangtze River region;

—–by law, after the closure order came down, all previously used equipment of the plant should be put into super safe, extra thick metal or cement containers to be buried deep underground. Instead, the plant bosses have disguised all pieces of their equipment as safe and sold them to factories across China, with deadly radioactive dose attached to them;

—–most of the 270 million RMB for transition and settlement have not been given to the laid off workers, as they are supposed to be. The bosses kept them;

—–the nuclear safety rules have been flagrantly violated by the plant management, causing an appalling death rate among the workers and nuclear contamination along the major river courses.”

August 8, 2004 10:42 AM
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Categories: Environment