With the federal government and Colorado officials at a stalemate over who’s to blame for the Animas River spill – they blame each other – Congress has commanded that Interior Secretary Sally Jewell appear before them Wednesday and address the investigative mess her agency has created.
The Natural Resources Committee hearing at 10 a.m. will focus on the actions of the Interior Department before, during and after the disaster, particularly the after part, when the agency was tasked with the investigation.
The State of Colorado refutes a pivotal assertion made by the report that shifts blame from the federal government.
Despite public promises, (Interior) failed to thoroughly investigate the Gold King Mine disaster, and in its narrowly scoped 60 day report, downplayed EPA’s responsibility for the blowout.
The committee contends that Interior totally failed to conduct a truly independent investigation, and we agree.
Ironically, the Interior Department has refused to make public the independent peer reviews of its investigation, just like the EPA refused to make public the events of the spill or it’s complete impact.
Interior’s report served as an enabler for EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to “to further stonewall the search for the truth behind the disaster,” said a report issued by the panel.
The report said Jewell’s agency minimized the spill’s impact and significance, and that the fed’s so-called investigation will have serious ramifications on the EPA’s handling of thousands of other sites nationwide.
And that’s just the cleanup sites already operating. The congressional committee really needs to get to the bottom of what happened in Colorado before the EPA gets too carried away with it’s new mission, which seems to be Superfunding the entire West.