U.S. demands explanation from province over river pollution from B.C. mines – by Bob Weber (CBC News British Columbia – May 11, 2020)


Contamination from Teck coal mines in waterways of Elk River watershed is a long-standing problem

CANADIAN PRESS: The U.S. government is increasingly concerned about pollution from British Columbian mines, following new research that shows contaminants in a river south of the border came from Canada.

In a letter obtained by The Canadian Press, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is demanding the provincial government hand over data explaining why Teck Resources coal mines in southern B.C. are being allowed to exceed guidelines for a toxic heavy metal.

“The EPA … finds it unacceptable that the province has accepted [a treatment plan] that will allow seasonal exceedances of water quality objectives into the future,” says the Feb. 4 letter to B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman.

“An independent review could help facilitate U.S. stakeholder confidence in this new approach.”

Contamination from Teck’s mines in the rivers of the Elk River watershed is a long-standing problem. Coal mining releases selenium, an element that in large amounts is toxic to wildlife and humans.

For the rest of this article: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/us-epa-pollution-rivers-teck-mines-bc-1.5564269

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