August 6, 2016--EPA to pay $1.2M more in costs from Colorado mine spill (Associated Press)

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Friday it will pay another $1.2 million to tribes, states and local governments affected by a massive mine waste spill in southwestern Colorado. The announcement came on the anniversary of the blowout at the Gold King Mine near Silverton. An EPA-led crew inadvertently triggered the spill during preliminary cleanup work on Aug. 5, 2015. The blowout released 3 million gallons of wastewater carrying arsenic, lead and other heavy metals. The spill tainted rivers in Colorado, New Mexico and Utah. Three Indian reservations in Colorado and New Mexico were affected. The EPA said water quality quickly returned to pre-spill levels — a point officials in New Mexico continue to dispute, saying the state's independent monitoring still show high lead levels being detected in river sediment near Farmington. The EPA has so far made $465,000 available to New Mexico to address the spill's aftermath. But that amount is just a fraction of the $6 million that Environment Department Secretary Ryan Flynn says New Mexico needs for cleanup and monitoring over a five-year period. "They haven't provided anywhere close to the funding that is necessary," Flynn said. To view the full article visit Associated Press.