September 01, 2017

Supreme Court won’t allow Gold King Mine to flood its original docket

Joseph L. Jenkins

On August 5, 2015, the portal of the Gold King Mine in Colorado was breached, releasing over three million gallons of mine wastewater. This wastewater, laden with toxic metals, traveled down the Animas and San Juan Rivers through Colorado, New Mexico, and the Navajo Nation, eventually ending up in Lake Powell in Utah. Using the “original and exclusive jurisdiction” of the Supreme Court of the United States, New Mexico filed suit against Colorado seeking redress for the contamination under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), and common law claims of nuisance and negligence.

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