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Colorado River Update: Rights of Nature Works in Nederland, Colorado!

Hi Friends of the Colorado River,

We’re happy to report that our “Rights of Nature for Rivers” campaign has already achieved a victory for protecting the local Boulder Creek watershed in Nederland, Colorado. Recall, back in July, Nederland was the first community in Colorado to pass a Rights of Nature resolution for their Boulder Creek watershed. That resolution gave us the impetus to engage more heavily in Nederland with a consequential outcome last week.

A month ago, our legal team discovered that a local mine had been illegally discharging pollution (heavy metals) into the Boulder Creek watershed and was violating the Clean Water Act. After that notification, our legal team contacted the Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), requesting information about the illegal pollution discharge.

We were preparing to sue the mine for the violation when, just two weeks later, the CDPHE issued a public “Notice of Violation” to the mine including a “cease and desist” order and threat of significant fines if the mining company doesn’t stop polluting the Boulder Creek watershed. The Boulder Daily Camera newspaper has the story here.

Due to our probing and publicizing, the State of Colorado Dept. of Public Health and Environment will now be taking action to clean up this mine. The Nederland Rights of Nature resolution was discussed in the Boulder Daily Camera story by Town Boardmember Alan Apt. 

Rights of Nature for Rivers increases the public awareness, discussion, and scrutiny of the health of rivers and the environment. In addition, any community that passes a resolution has our support to help with Clean Water Act violations and enforcement. Due to our work in Nederland, I was quoted in the article:

“In order for the mine to clean up its act, there’s going to have to be a consequential amount of new technology that occurs in terms of purifying the water before they dump it into the watershed. We’re generally hopeful that the state will deal with it and follow up.” — Gary Wockner of Save The Colorado

We greatly appreciate your support — it keeps us working hard.

You can donate online by clicking here.

Have a great Thanksgiving weekend!

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