EPA ORDERS WORK AT CAMERON, SMITH LAKE CHAPTER MINES

(The following is a reformatted version of a press release
issued by The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and received
via e-mail. The release was confirmed by the sender.) 
September 12, 2013 
EPA Orders Work at Cameron, Smith Lake Chapter Mines 
El Paso Natural Gas and Western Nuclear, Inc. to investigate
abandoned uranium mines on Navajo Nation 
 SAN FRANCISCO - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has
ordered El Paso Natural Gas and Western Nuclear, Inc. to begin
work to investigate potential risks at abandoned uranium mine
sites in Cameron and Smith Lake Chapters in the Navajo Nation.
The work will be conducted under separate orders, with oversight
by EPA and Navajo EPA. 
“This work, estimated to cost $2.5 million, is another element
in our partnership to deal with the toxic legacy of abandoned
uranium mines,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Administrator in
the Pacific Southwest Region.  “We are using all the tools
available to us, including having the responsible parties pay to
clean up these sites.” 
El Paso Natural Gas will work in the Cameron Chapter to assess
24 mine sites for radiation contamination.  While the assessment
work will begin in Spring 2014, fencing and signs will be placed
around some sites this fall. 
Western Nuclear, Inc. will begin work in mid-September at the
Ruby Mines in Smith Lake Chapter to close two mine entry points
or adits, and close two vent holes.  The company will also
conduct an assessment to determine the work necessary to remove
radiation contaminated soils from the mine areas and washes,
arroyos, and roads near the mine. 
The work being done at these mine sites in Cameron and Smith
Lake are part of a broader program to screen, assess, and clean
up abandoned uranium mine sites throughout Navajo Nation.  For
further information on the previous Five Year Plan and its
accomplishments, please visit:
http://www.epa.gov/region9/superfund/navajo-nation/ 
### 
EPA Contact:  Margot Perez-Sullivan, (415) 947-4149,
perezsullivan.margot@epa.gov 
(sgp) NY 
#<278855.14078.3.7.1.0.76>#
 
 
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