Thousands of mines with toxic water lie under the West

August 10, 2015 11:26 AM

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Thousands of mines with toxic water lie under the West

Aug. 8, 2015: A warning sign from the city is displayed in front of the Animas River as orange sludge from a mine spill upstream flows past Berg Park in Farmington, N.M. (AP/The Daily Times)

DENVER – Beneath the western United States lie thousands of old mining tunnels filled with the same toxic stew that spilled into a Colorado river last week, turning it into a nauseating yellow concoction and stoking alarm about contamination of drinking water.

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