New Mexico’s “Death Map”: Uranium and Nuclear Energy in the US

In northwestern New Mexico, a small community grapples with what it believes to be the deadly effects of 22.2 million tons of uranium waste. A relic of the Cold War, the waste is left over from milling ore to supply power plants and nuclear bombs. As ProPublica recently reported, the number of community members falling sick and dying prompted residents to build a “death map.” Colorful arrows point to households with serious illness: turquoise for thyroid problems, dark blue for breast cancer, yellow where cancer claimed a life.

What does our reporting tell us about federal regulations around uranium mining and the associated cleanup? How can we better prepare for the potential resurgence of the uranium market and nuclear energy? How are residents near these sites impacted?

In this virtual program, a panel of experts dive into ProPublica’s investigation of the country’s roughly 50 former uranium mills and the more than 250 million tons of radioactive waste they generated.

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