Assessing Atomic Energy Act's Reach At High Court

Law360 (November 14, 2018, 3:05 PM EST) -- On Nov. 5, the U.S. Supreme Court held oral arguments in Virginia Uranium Inc. v. Warren,[1] which will further define the reach of the Atomic Energy Act, or AEA, to preempt state legislation encroaching on radiological safety. In this case, Virginia passed a moratorium on conventional uranium mining, which is not covered by the AEA. Virginia Uranium challenged this law as preempted, alleging that the purpose behind the statute was to regulate downstream milling and uranium tailings, activities that are regulated by the AEA. The Fourth Circuit upheld the district court’s dismissal of Virginia Uranium’s complaint because it found the intent of the...

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