The Environmental Protection Agency has fined Coeur Alaska over half a million dollars for failing to comply with environmental regulations at the Kensington Mine near Juneau.
Over two hundred wastewater violations were documented in a facility-wide inspection with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation in 2015. Violations included the release of acid rock drainage into Lower Slate Lake and lapses in environmental monitoring, assessments, inspections and trainings.
In a statement, the EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Director Ed Kowalski said, “Coeur Alaska can and must do better in order to comply with our fundamental laws that protect people and the environment.”
As part of the settlement, Coeur Alaska is required to collect and treat acid rock drainage before discharging it into Lower Slate Lake. An EPA press release says, the State of Alaska modified Kensington’s permits to allow the discharge of residual acid rock drainage into Lower Slate Lake starting August 1st.
Representatives from Coeur Alaska and the Alaska Department of Natural Resources were unavailable for comment by broadcast time.