This is in an area of the US that is very arid. Agriculture depends heavily on irrigation. The headgates have had to been shut in order to not contaminate the fields. Farmers have been forced to pray for rainfall. Rangers have been advised to keep livestock away from the river.
Of course river systems eventually flow into other rivers and then empty into the oceans and this is no exception. Eventually the contamination will spread into the beleaguered Colorado River.
The EPA has been cleaning up numerous abandoned mine sites in the area that have been leaking toxic runoff into local waterways. The Gold King Mine is currently leaking about 550 gallons per minute into the environment, down from over 700 gal/min on Friday.
Social media has a lot to say about the incident. Many are angry and refuse to call it an accident but rather gross mismanagement. Whatever it is eventually called, it will be the people along the river system who will be the ones to pay for the contamination.
Blogger, gardener, farmer. Working toward food security and a 30 foot
diet. Addicted to reading. Love this planet, especially my little corner
on Vancouver Island, Canada