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EPA Installs Barrier, Valve In Mine That Spilled Toxic Waste

DENVER (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is installing a barrier and valve inside an inactive Colorado mine to prevent another surge of toxic wastewater like a 2015 blowout that contaminated rivers in three states.

The 12-inch valve will regulate wastewater pouring from the Gold King Mine in the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado, where the EPA inadvertently triggered a wastewater spill while excavating at the mine entrance in August 2015.

gold king mine spill1 EPA Installs Barrier, Valve In Mine That Spilled Toxic Waste

(credit: CBS)

That spill released 3 million gallons of wastewater containing aluminum, iron and other heavy metals and instantly became a major embarrassment for the EPA. Rivers in Colorado, New Mexico and Utah were tainted.

The EPA hasn’t said how much the barrier will cost. The agency didn’t immediately respond to a phone call and emails Wednesday.

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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