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Uranium company welcomes independent assessments of operations

 Headspring Investments, a locally registered subsidiary of Uranium One, under the umbrella of the Russian state-owned nuclear energy company Rosatom, is championing transparency by endorsing independent assessments of its operations in Namibia. These assessments aim to verify the safety of its extraction methods and gather recommendations to establish industry best practices.

The company has been endorsing exploration activities in Namibia’s Leonardville area of the Stampriet aquifer, utilizing the in-situ leaching (ISL) method, also known as in-situ recovery (ISR) or solution mining, as its preferred extraction technique. This method involves recovering minerals like copper and uranium through boreholes drilled into a deposit.

Research indicates that the ISR method has minimal environmental impact compared to traditional mining methods, as it doesn’t require extensive excavation involving deep shafts and tunnels. Instead, ISR involves pumping liquids through the orebody while it remains in the ground to extract minerals through leaching.

The company’s stance aligns with recent calls from Namibia’s agriculture, water, and land reform minister, Calle Schlettwein, emphasizing the necessity of comprehensive independent assessments for geological exploration projects. These remarks were made in response to inquiries from United People’s Movement president Jan van Wyk in parliament.

Schlettwein emphasized the significance of safeguarding the groundwater resources of the Stampriet Aquifer, which serves as the primary water source for approximately 80,000 people in Omaheke and parts of the Hardap regions for various purposes including domestic, livestock, and irrigation needs.

Headspring Investments, primarily engaged in extensive drilling activities to assess the economic viability of the Stampriet area for ISL uranium mining operations, targets exploration potential for the Wings Project. Plans are underway to involve independent experts from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to provide advice and assessments.

In a recent statement, Headspring Investments reiterated its commitment to transparency and environmental responsibility, pledging to engage in open dialogue and consultations with stakeholders to address any concerns regarding its operations. The company also welcomed the involvement of independent bodies like the IAEA to assess its practices and confirmed that no drilling activities have occurred at the site since November 9, 2021.

Headspring awaits the opportunity to conduct a field trial, expressing confidence that the results will validate the safety of its extraction methods, particularly in safeguarding underground water sources crucial to local communities. The company also reaffirmed its dedication to fostering productive dialogue and collaboration to promote safety, security, and best practices within the industry.

 

 

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