• Wood’ja Believe What Crew Poisoned The River Orange?

    One of the Environmental Protection Agency safety teams released contaminated water from a mine into the Animas River in southwest Colorado.

    Mustard-colored water loaded with heavy metals, including arsenic, lead, copper, aluminum and cadmium, began rushing out of the Gold King Mine in southern Colorado on Wednesday after a team of EPA geniuses disturbed a dam of loose rock lodged in the min

    The spill occurred when one of its teams was using heavy equipment to enter the Gold King Mine, a suspended mine near Durango, according to the EPA. Instead of entering the mine and beginning the process of pumping and treating the contaminated water inside as planned, the team accidentally caused it to flow into the nearby Animas River.

    The EPA initially estimated 1 million gallons of mine waste had been released when the spill occurred Wednesday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported the size of the spill to be more than 3 million gallons.

    Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper declared a state-of-disaster emergency on Monday, a move that allocates $500,000 from the state’s disaster emergency fund to pay for assessments and the response.

    “Our priority remains to ensure public safety and minimize environmental impacts,” the governor said.

    “By declaring a disaster emergency, we are able to better support impacted businesses and communities with state resources. We will work closely with the EPA to continue to measure water quality as it returns to normal, but also to work together to assess other mines throughout the state to make sure this doesn’t happen again,” he said.

    The spill has led to health warnings, turned the river orange, and sent heavy metals, arsenic and other contaminants into the waterway that flows into the San Juan National Forest.

    Cities in New Mexico are also at risk as the pollution flows from the Animas River into the San Juan River.

    The New Mexico Governor’s office criticized how the EPA released information about the spill, claiming her office learned about the spill from the Southern Ute Tribe, according to the governor’s spokesperson Chris Sanchez.

    “The governor is disturbed by the lack of information provided by the EPA to our environmental agencies in New Mexico and strongly believes that people in our communities downstream deserve to have all the information about this situation,” Sanchez said in a statement.

    The rivers’ ecosystems are also at risk.

    “The fish population is especially very sensitive to water contamination, and we really won’t be able to see what the impacts are until all of the pollution has run its course. Time will tell what the true impacts are,” said Kim Stevens, director of the advocacy group Environment Colorado.

    Officials from the EPA say that drinking water is not affected and that the spill is not harmful to humans, but just a glance at a photo of the orange-yellowish slush is enough to know that something is desperately wrong.

    Scientists will have to determine how dangerous the contamination is.

    Alicia Powe

    Staff Writer

    Alicia Powe is a staff writer for Daily Surge. She worked in the War Room of the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Committee and served as a White House Intern during the George W. Bush administration. Alicia has written for numerous outlets, including Human Events, Media Research Center and Townhall.com.

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