CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — One of the biggest uranium mines in Wyoming, the nation’s top producer of the radioactive metal, proposes to more than double in size within the next two years.
Ur-Energy plans to expand its Lost Creek in-situ mine in south-central Wyoming to cover some 15 square miles.
In-situ mining is a process that dissolves uranium underground and pumps uranium-bearing solution to the surface. Facilities elsewhere process the uranium into nuclear fuel.
The proposal must be approved by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, which is now taking public comment.
The global uranium market remains weak since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan. Prices are about one-third of their 2007 peak.
Steve Hatten with Littleton, Colorado-based Ur-Energy (YOU’-are Energy) says prices could recover as Japan restarts more of its nuclear reactors.