- Last Updated on 07:41 AM 07/08/13
- BY Special to the Gazette
Hollywood is coming to Halifax this weekend when the public is invited to view a free screening of a new a one hour, 20 minute anti-uranium mining documentary Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Halifax County High School auditorium.
“Hot Water,” a documentary exposing the long-term devastation wrought by uranium mining and the nuclear industry, follows the investigative journey of Liz Rogers, the “Erin Brockovich of Uranium,” as she travels around the nation examining the legacy of uranium mining, atomic testing and the creeping danger of contaminated waste in the drinking water of 38 million people.
Rogers and her production partner, Kevin Flint, examine the health and environmental impacts of the uranium industry and examine the possibility of a Fukushima type disaster along the California coastline.
“We The People of Virginia, Inc.” is bringing the film screening of “Hot Water” to Halifax County where a moratorium on uranium mining has been at the center of a statewide battle between activists and the uranium mining industry.
The documentary is described as a “powerful film that exposes the truths behind how the ground water, air and soil of the American Southwest came to be contaminated with some of the most toxic substances and heavy metals known to man due to the mining of uranium and the health and environmental impacts that followed.”
According to Jack Dunavant of Halifax, chairman of “We the People,” “These occurrences in the American Southwest should act as a warning sign to the citizens of Southside Virginia and beyond, as the film portrays the risks the area will be taking if Pittsylvania County welcomes such a destructive industry.”
In the uranium mining documentary, filmmakers Liz Rogers and Kevin Flint begin in South Dakota witnessing communities overwhelmed by cancer from what they described as constant exposure to uranium from local mining interests. They speak with academic experts who pierce through the industry’s claims of safety. They take samples showing that radioactive material is seeping toward the nation’s breadbasket.
Rogers and Flint follow the story to Oklahoma to explain the economic model of the industry. Private companies mine the uranium for a massive profit. Local workers and residents are made promises, but when finally forced to admit the environmental and health impact of the mining, the companies take their profits, declare bankruptcy and saddle the American taxpayer with hundreds of billions of dollars in clean-up costs, according to the documentary.
“I don’t know who started calling me the Erin Brockovich of uranium. Maybe I am the old and fat Erin Brockovich with a trucker mouth,” said Rogers. “I took this journey because I was pissed off. I felt like an idiot because I believed the lies. I believed we were safe. I made this film because people need to know the truth.”
In the film, Rogers and Flint speak with academic experts including biologist Charmaine Whiteface; Dr. Kim Kearfott, nuclear engineer and professor of nuclear engineering at University of Michigan; Dr. Hannan LaGarry, professor of geology at Oglala Lakota College; Dr. Jim Stone, professor of civil engineering at the South Dakota School of Mines; as well as former congressman and leading environmental supporter Dennis Kucinich.
Following the screening of “Hot Water” at the high school on Saturday, discussion with filmmakers Lizabeth Rogers and Kevin Flint, Executive Producers Elizabeth Kucinich and Oscar® winner Donald C. Rogers will follow.
The screening is free to the public, with tax deductible donations accepted by the Hestia Gaea Foundation who are helping to fund the project.