Crowd gathers to discuss gold exploration vote
RAPID CITY, S.D. — The Rapid City Common Council says no to gold exploration in the Silver City area.
Council chambers were packed Monday night for a major decision regarding gold exploration and environmental safety.
Thirty-one people asked to make public comment, all concerned about a resolution opposing gold exploration in the Black Hills. The main concern was water quality.
Opponents of mining say chemicals used for mining may contaminate the water and destroy land with digging.
Proponents for exploration argued that mining technology has evolved, and is advanced enough to prevent dangerous levels of chemicals from damaging the environment.
“And just like a hundred years ago we didn’t know some of the impacts that mining would have but we have science and we’ve grown in technology and we know how to manage these situations,” said former miner and mining professor Andrea Brickey.
Council members and Rapid City residents spent over an hour debating, expressing fears and asking questions.
In the end the council voted no to gold exploration near Silver City.