Navajo Nation Furious Over Government Inaction On Animas River Spill
n August, the Environmental Protection Agency, in their infinite wisdom, decided to let three million gallons of toxic water from the abandoned Gold King Mine contaminate the Animas River. The EPA was sent there on a clean up mission, as the mine had been abandoned for nearly a decade–and accumulating hazardous water waste as a result. All told, the arsenic levels in the river are now 300 times the normal rate, with lead levels at 3,500 times what is considered healthy.
The Navajo nation slammed the president’s inaction over the Animas river spill in Colorado that is threatening their way of life. House and Senate hearings over the spill are being held in Congress over this issue (via the Hill):
Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye again called on Obama and administration officials to declare the San Juan River a disaster zone.
In August, an EPA accident resulted in 3 million gallons of contaminated water flowing into the Animas River, which runs into the San Juan River. One-third of the Navajo Nation’s people rely on the Animus for water.
EPA officials have insisted the toxins have been diluted. But Begaye said he “doesn't buy it.” He argues toxins are seeping into ranchers' soil and threatening livestock and crops.
“There's no way we can guarantee that the drinking water is safe,” he said.
“We are asking the Democratic Party to have President Obama declare the river a disaster area — and we haven't gotten anything. Nothing,” he said. “The Democrats? I don't know what happened. We basically are Democrats. We always vote Democrat. But it seems like they've just walked away. And we're not hearing anything that's of value to us from the Democrats.”