EPA will reconsider mine spill payouts
The Environmental Protection Agency will reconsider whether to pay farmers, business owners and others in three states for economic losses caused by a mine waste spill that government crews accidentally triggered in 2015, the agency’s leader said Friday during a visit to the site.
EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, who toured Gold King Mine with Colorado lawmakers on the eve of the disaster’s second anniversary, said he told people to resubmit claims rejected under the Obama administration.
The spill sent 3 million gallons of tainted wastewater from the old gold mine into rivers in Colorado, New Mexico and Utah, causing an estimated $420 million in economic damages. The EPA has designated the area a Superfund site.
Stretches of waterways turned an eerie orange-yellow, and the rivers were temporarily off-limits for agriculture and water utilities, as well as fishing and boating.