Gold King Mine Superfund Request Could Come This Week

Mine Waste Leak
<p>(AP Photo/Brennan&nbsp;<span data-scayt-word="Linsley" data-scayt-lang="en_US">Linsley</span>)</p>
<p>The water of the Cement Creek flows down a valley a few miles downstream from the Gold King Mine, where a wastewater accident several days earlier has raised alarm, outside Silverton, Colo., Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015.</p>

Silverton town leaders could make a formal request this week for a Superfund designation to clean up abandoned mines in the area—including the Gold King Mine.

San Juan County and Silverton officials have a series of meetings scheduled this week to discuss a Superfund listing. Town leaders have resisted that designation in the past. But when EPA officials accidentally triggered the release of 3 million gallons of orange wastewater into the Animas River near Silverton last year, the conversation shifted.

If both the town council and county commissioners agree to move forward, they’ll send a formal letter to Gov. John Hickenlooper requesting the designation. The process requires that governor make the official request to the EPA.