Political News

New Mexico lawmakers briefed on lead levels after mine spill

Posted 12:00 p.m. Tuesday

— Some state lawmakers are still concerned about potential lead contamination in the Animas River more than a year after a mine waste spill in southern Colorado fouled rivers in three western states.

The legislative Indian Affairs Committee met Monday in northwestern New Mexico.

The Daily Times reports (http://bit.ly/2e2QwCH) that committee members heard from state environment officials about the 2015 Gold King Mine spill that sent more than 3 million gallons of contaminated water into the Animas and San Juan rivers.

Officials discussed the spikes in lead levels when the plume reached New Mexico and again after subsequent rain events.

State Environment Department scientist Dennis McQuillan told lawmakers contaminated sediment has washed down the river with spring and summer runoff, but he couldn't say where that sediment might be now.


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