Discharge into streamupsetting at Copper | SummitDaily.com

Discharge into streamupsetting at Copper

Kim Fenske
Copper Mountain

Last Monday, I was walking along the narrow bidirectional bus corridor from Center Village to East Village at Copper Mountain.

As I strolled, my first striking observation was a sign informing passersby that the paved golf cart pathway is trespassing, out-of-bounds for joggers, bicyclists, and other mere mortals.

The sign provided a poignant reminder that Copper is not friendly to pedestrians.

My second notable observation was a stream of muck being pumped into the creek that passes through Copper Village.

Following the caramel stream of silt into East Village, I saw an excavation crew pumping mud out of a hole and discharging the nonmetallic mining slurry into the waterway.

After contacting law enforcement concerning an apparent violation of federal law prohibiting direct discharges into wetlands without a 404 permit, I was informed by the fire department that the silting of the stream was necessary for the expansion of infrastructure, a fire hydrant.

Under customary development practices, discharges are diverted to settling ponds or other filtration systems. However, Copper demonstrates different methods, choking waterways and fish gills with silt.

Kim Fenske

Copper Mountain

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