August 14, 2015--Feds look at long-term solution to mining pollution (Daily Times)

While experts continue to monitor conditions on the Animas River after a spill last week at the Gold King Mine in Colorado, federal officials are beginning to discuss solutions to the decades-old problem of pollution in the Upper Animas Mining District. On Wednesday, a bipartisan coalition of U.S. lawmakers from Colorado and New Mexico called on President Barack Obama to consider devoting federal funds to building a water treatment plant on the Upper Animas River. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy told The Daily Times Wednesday the EPA needed to take a "long-term view" of the crisis. She pointed out the EPA has long sought a Superfund designation for the Upper Animas River watershed, but has been rebuked by locals and former mine operators. Though the Upper Animas Mining District is not a Superfund site, it's long been the focus of remediation efforts by local, state and federal entities. The EPA was in the process of plugging the Red & Bonita Mine when the Gold King Mine was inadvertently breached by an EPA team on Aug. 5. The agency installed a concrete bulkhead at the Red & Bonita Mine, located upstream of the Gold King Mine, due to the threat the mine posed to human health and the environment, according to federal records.The EPA determined in March 2013 the century-old mine was discharging approximately 300 gallons per minute of acidic water containing high concentrations of aluminum, cadmium, iron, lead, manganese and zinc, the records state.To view the full article and report visit the Daily Times.