EPA will re­con­sider mine spill pay­outs

Austin American-Statesman - - MORE OF TODAY’S TOP NEWS - From news ser­vices

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.

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