The EPA wants a federal court to kick out a lawsuit that Utah, New Mexico, and the Navajo Nation filed against them for the Gold King Mine disaster the federal agency caused under the Obama administration.
We’re a little confused by the language in the Associated Press report, which suggests the $2 billion plus sought by state and tribal governments is for cleanup costs and damages.
The EPA’s reasoning appears earnest — they don’t need the court intervening to force the cleanup because the agency is already cleaning up the mess.
PeakNation™ will recall the Obama administration created an enormous Superfund around that one mine it corrupted to pollute the Animas River, and is spending millions of dollars not to pollute it, again.
We’ve preached at length the EPA should repay communities and businesses for losses due to the spill.
But that figure seems a little excessive for cleanup, which the river mostly did itself once the EPA stopped polluting it, or for damages.
Utah is asking for $1.9 billion, New Mexico wants $130 million and the Navajo Nation is claiming $162 million.
We’ll keep you updated when the judge makes a decision whether the case will go forward. We suspect what we are watching is a public negotiating table to bring down the costs requested by the states.