SAN PABLO — Water here is so scarce that farmers habitually gaze up at the mountains surrounding their valley — where overpumping from aquifers may force 80,000 irrigated acres out of production.
As Rose Medina traversed her ancestral lands last week, scanning the Sangre de Cristos for the promise of a strong spring runoff, she saw barely a dusting of snow.
It’ll take at least a decade before Cotter Corp.’s contaminated Colorado
uranium mill is cleaned up under a new deal aimed at accelerating work
at the site.
The agreement settles a long-running dispute about the
surety fund – state officials have estimated cleanup would cost as much
as $40 million – and also sets Cotter’s timetable and penalties if
deadlines aren’t met.
A watchdog group criticized the deal, saying plans
were revised with little public input.
Workers at Suncor Energy ‘s oil refinery north of Denver – nearly all 500 – have had their blood tested for benzene as Suncor excavates pipeline to deal with tainted tap water and tries to contain contamination of Sand Creek.
Nobody knows how long drinking water at the Suncor refinery has contained benzene. Results of blood tests were kept confidential.