Mining Reform

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Mining Reform

Colorado’s environment and the health and safety of our communities are facing significant impacts from remnants of our mining legacy. Our state contains tens of thousands of sites where gold, silver, and other minerals were once mined, but the areas have not yet been cleaned up or made safe. Many of these mines are leaking toxins into our watersheds, harming wildlife and polluting our rivers and streams. This is a huge problem that has gone unfixed for far too long. animas-river-spill-before-afterOn August 5, 2015, the vast scale of Colorado’s mining pollution was brought into the public eye when more than three million gallons of mining waste spilled into the Animas River in southwest Colorado. This catastrophe turned the river orange and educated the country about the gravity of our state’s mining issues. Conservation Colorado is working to establish strong protections for watersheds before, during, and after mining occurs, rather than reacting to pollution disasters or thrusting the financial burden of mining cleanup on local communities and Colorado taxpayers.
mine mount sherman colorado view miningPoll: What Coloradans Think One Year After the Gold King Mine Spill – August 2, 2016

One year later, 86% of Coloradans are concerned about the state of our rivers and streams.

Looking forward after the Gold King Mine Spill – August 14, 2015

The Gold King Mine spill is a tragedy. There’s no doubt about that. We’re all angry and profoundly saddened to see the lifeblood of Southwest Colorado spoiled. And the question on most of our minds is how on earth did this happen?

Mining in the News

When our river turned orange – August 9, 2015

Nine things you need to know about the Animas River mine waste spill.

What the Gold Mine Disaster Tells Us – August 9, 2015

The New York Times editorializes on the “destructive relic” that is our current mining law.

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