Black Hills Chapter

Take Action!

Sign our petition asking SD Tourism Secretary James Hagen to take a stand against the proposed Dewey Burdock uranium mine in the Southern Black Hills and protect South Dakota’s reputation as a tourist destination. Then please share the petition with your friends.

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About the Black Hills Chapter

The Black Hills Chapter launched in June 2011 and has membership in Pennington, Meade, Fall River, Shannon, Custer and Lawrence counties.

We are united in our concern for the stewardship of the land and the empowerment of people in our communities.  Our mission is to cultivate a vibrant local economy and community linked to the land that sustains the people of the Black Hills region. We organize for 

Community: Building strong, vibrant communities; collaborating and organizing to empower people for actions on decisions that affect our quality of life.

Local Food: Raising awareness of the health and economic benefits of local food; encouraging choices that support thriving Black Hills agriculture markets.

Agricultural Land: Cultivating lifestyles that support and preserve healthy working landscapes, innovative and sustainable agricultural practices, and land use.

Energy and Natural Resources: Promoting local clean energy production and independence; conserving natural resources for future generations through stewardship, education, and legislation.

Contact the Black Hills Chapter Organizer Jillian Anawaty, at 605.716.2200 or jillian@dakotarural.org, to participate. The Black Hills Chapter meets the second Monday of the month and locations across the hills. Please join us!


Chapter News & Action Feed

Chapter Leadership

Chairperson – Clay Uptain
Vice Chairperson – Ken Anderson
Secretary – Gena Parkhurst
Treasurer – Dahl McLean
DRA Board Reps – Andy Johnson and Kim Kelley

Current Campaign: Stop Uranium Mining in the Black Hills
We love the Black Hills region of South Dakota. Anyone in touch with their senses is struck with the majesty and enchanting charm of these hills and prairies. The land and water are precious, and should be cherished and honored. Some, however, see this beauty and only think about what they can take – what is in that water and ground that can be extracted – how much money is it worth?

A foreign-owned (largely Chinese) corporation, Powertech (one of 8 known uranium companies prospecting the region), is posed to start new uranium mining in the Black Hills near Edgemont. Powertech has applied for the first ever in-situ leach (ISL) uranium mining permits in the state of South Dakota.

A little about the proposed process:

ISL uranium mining is a process of pumping a solution through numerous bore holes to dissolve the uranium and other heavy metals, leaching it out of ore-bearing rock. It is then pumped to the surface to be processed. The waste water would then be either pumped back into the ground and/or spray irrigated over roughly 1,000 acres.

Uranium mining is a boom and bust business, prioritizing short-term extraction and exploitation for foreign gain, over the lives of people and resources. We can live without uranium. We cannot live without clean water.

Stop uranium mining in the Black Hills!

Black Hills Chapter Members recently toured the proposed ISL mining site.

If ISL uranium mining is allowed to take root in the Black Hills, the process would deplete local resources with little or no benefit to our local economy, community, energy production, and agriculture – while ultimately posing risks to all mentioned. It threatens natural resources, quality of life, public health, local economy, tourism, and agriculture. -Dakota Rural Action, Black Hills Chapter Campaign Statement

Find out more about the proposed uranium mining in the Southern Black Hills on the website of our ally Clean Water Alliance.

Uranium Mining Fact Sheet

Download (PDF, 410KB)