Agencies Not Coming Clean About the EPA’s Responsibility For Poisoning the Animas River

On August 5, 2015, EPA contractors and officials caused a spill of 3 million gallons of water containing toxic heavy metals into the Animas River in Colorado, which serves as a drinking water source for thousands of residents in Colorado and other states. The agency took full responsibility for the disaster and later commissioned an independent analysis of the spill and its cause. The resulting report from the Interior Department’s Bureau of Reclamation contains abundant technical information, but clearly fails to identify the EPA personnel whose negligence caused the spill. Private citizens accused of similar negligence have faced criminal prosecution. The EPA and the Justice Department should be asked why the federal government discriminates in favor of government employees and against private parties.

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