House Bill 1150 in South Dakota Legislature Requires Action NOW.
Rep. Shawn Bordeaux has introduced House Bill 1150 in the South Dakota Legislature and we are waiting for the bill to be scheduled for a hearing. We SUPPORT this legislation and ask that everyone email House members in support of the bill (details below).
HB 1150 would add the following to state law: “The use of a cyanide leaching or other chemical or biological leaching process in gold or silver mining operations is prohibited.”
Bordeaux has also introduced House Bill 1181, which says “The use of a cyanide leaching or other chemical or biological leaching process in uranium mining operations is prohibited.” As soon as we see this bill sent to a committee, we will let you know. But for now our focus is on HB 1150, which has been referred to the House State Affairs Committee.
WHY ARE WE CONCERNED?
Cyanide is used to leach gold and other minerals out of rock. You’ve probably heard of cyanide and know that it is dangerous. It is a highly toxic substance that has been used as a chemical war agent. It can kill people and other animals through skin contact, breathing it in, or in liquid form. In mining operations, it is a threat not only to mine employees, but also to anyone downstream in the case of a leak or spill.
Many places have BANNED the use of cyanide in mining, including Montana, Wisconsin, Germany, the Czech Republic, and Turkey. Montana banned the use of cyanide in mining in 1998 by a citizen initiative.
WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW!
Go to this webpage, which lists the members of the House State Affairs Committee —2022 South Dakota House State Affairs (sdlegislature.gov)
You can click on each name, and the legislator’s information will come up, including their email address. Send a quick email to as many legislators as possible saying you support House Bill 1150 and why.
Sometime in the next couple weeks, there will be a hearing on HB 1150. As many people as possible should go to Pierre to attend the hearing and/or testify, or to testify for the bill remotely.
Let’s protect the water, air, wildlife, and people in South Dakota from cyanide! Act Now — the timeline may be very short.
Note: Groups or individuals wanting to testify before the committee via remote means or submit a digital handout or written testimony may submit their request and/or materials to firstname.lastname@example.org
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