The EPA gestapo will not release toxic spill documents to the House committee, according to Watchdog. As has been the case for the past seven years, the government agency has more power than Congress.
The mine is still leaking but it’s been directed into a tributary.
The toxic metals are being kicked up along the shore of the Animas and San Juan Rivers despite the EPA saying everything is fine and after approving the reopening of the rivers.
We should send all the EPA people out there to drink the water. That will solve the problem of the EPA and we can hire all new people!
The danger is in the sediment now settled around the banks and in the Animas river bed itself.
Visitors to the beach behind Durango High School stir up sediment from the Gold King Mine spill on the Animas River in mid-August.
The EPA claims the water is trending towards pre-skill conditions and can be used for agriculture but the Navajo Nation isn’t buying it.
“I’m glad the (EPA) water samples indicate the water is safe for irrigation use, but I remain concerned over the soil and sediment that lines our (river’s) bank,” said tribe President Russell Begaye in a statement. “Every time a heavy storm hits or the soil is disturbed it can recontaminate the water.”
The tribe, in a news release, said the majority of chapters impacted by the closure voted last week against reopening the San Juan out of fears its waters might contaminate their crops. The Navajos are being painted as distrustful but they are actually being very realistic.
The sediment on the banks and the riverbed contains elevated levels of lead and arsenic and poses a potential health risk in both the short- and long-term.
“That’s where the real risk lies in the river,” Danny Teitelbaum, a Colorado School of Mines professor and toxicologist, said in a previous interview with The Durango Herald. “That’s persistent material that can get into the fish, plants and even the water supply. … The big risks are birth defects and neurological effects on children, whose nervous systems are developing.”
The mine is still releasing water at a rate of approximately 559 gallons per minute. The water is captured and treated before being discharged into Cement Creek, a tributary of the Animas.
The EPA is blocking the release of documents surrounding the spill.
What could possibly be confidential about any of their documents? The documents would no doubt show how incompetent they are.
They have already redacted documents so we can’t find out what happened before the spill or how much the contractor was paid.
Rep. Lamar Smith is the chairman of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee but he can’t get the EPA documents on the Gold King mine spill.
“It is disappointing, but not surprising, that the EPA failed to meet the House Science Committee’s reasonable deadline in turning over documents pertaining to the Gold King Mine spill,” said Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX). “These documents are essential to the Committee’s ongoing investigation and our upcoming hearing on Sept. 9. But more importantly, this information matters to the many Americans directly affected in western states, who are still waiting for answers from the EPA.”
Gina McCarthy wouldn’t even visit the site of the spill which is an Obama administration tactic – avoid bad photo ops at all costs. Barack Obama certainly won’t visit.
“EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy is currently crusading on climate-change action in Japan while President Obama, who has yet to visit the areas affected by the spill, is touring the U.S. to tout EPA’s latest regulation that will do little to impact climate change and will only further burden Americans with higher electric bills,” Smith said.
“Time and again, the EPA has failed to be cooperative, forthright, or reasonable in its dealings with my Committee and with Congress in general,” Smith told Watchdog. “The agency embodies all the dysfunction, misguided priorities, and government overreach that angers so many Americans. The EPA seems to have a clear disregard for the very people it is intended to serve.”
The EPA is being accused of creating the toxic spill in the Animas River to force the communities to agree to make it a Superfund site to build a waste-water treatment site nearby. Utah State Sen. Margaret Dayton has asked for an investigation.
The EPA waited a day before notifying New Mexico of the spill and that was after the Navajo Nation discovered it. Their supplies of water have been coming in filthy and they expect the Navajos to water their cattle and irrigate their crops with it.
When the Navajos were given claim forms, they had to agree to never make any further claims despite the fact that the spill will possibly have very long-term consequences.
The EPA has done absolutely nothing right but they insist on more power. They even want to control the puddles on your property.