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Wildlife agency sues Coors over fish kill.



AP--The Colorado Division of Wildlife sued Coors Brewing Co. last week to recover the value of more than 50,000 fish killed last summer when the company spilled beer into Clear Creek Clear Creek may refer to any of the 1,305 streams bearing this name in the United States as reported by the United States Geological Survey See this link Hydronyms
  • Clear Creek (Alaska), a tributary of the Nenana River
.

The agency said state law places the value of each fish at $35, making the total damages at least $1.75 million. State law gives the agency the right to recover the value of any wildlife unlawfully taken, the DOW said.

The complaint, filed in Jefferson County Jefferson County is the name of 25 counties and one parish in the United States. The following are named for Thomas Jefferson, third President of the United States:
  • Jefferson County, Alabama
  • Jefferson County, Arkansas
  • Jefferson County, Colorado
 District Court, said Coors Brewing Co. discharged beer into its wastewater treatment plant Wastewater treatment plant also called wastewater treatment works
  • Sewage treatment – treatment and disposal of human waste.
  • Industrial wastewater treatment – the treatment of wet wastes from manufacturing industry and commerce including mining, quarrying and
 on Aug. 24, 2000. The plant stopped operating normally, and 77,000 gallons of beer was released into Clear Creek with little or no treatment.

The discharge killed fish within 7.4 miles downstream on Clear Creek, the lawsuit said. The species that were killed included sand shiners, creek chubs, fathead minnows The fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas), is a species of temperate freshwater fish belonging to the Pimephales genus of the cyprinid family. The natural geographic range extends throughout much of North America, from central Canada south along the Rockies to , longnose dace The longnose dace is found in muddy and warm, clear and cold, streams and lakes. The largest longnose dace are about 6 inches long. They are well-adapted for living on the bottom of fast-flowing streams among the stones. Longnose dace eat mostly immature aquatic insects.  and largemouth bass largemouth bass

see micropterus salmoides.
.

At the time, wildlife officials said it was the largest fish kill in Colorado in at least two decades. Ten years earlier, a similar brewery accident killed 13,193 fish.

In a written statement, Coors officials said they were disappointed the wildlife agency chose to take legal action. "Over the last year, we have been working very hard with them in good faith to resolve this issue. In fact, immediately after the accident we offered to totally restock re·stock  
tr.v. re·stocked, re·stock·ing, re·stocks
To furnish new stock for; stock again.

Verb 1. restock - stock again; "He restocked his land with pheasants"
 the creek to replenish the fish population. The DOW has repeatedly declined this offer, as well as other informal and formal offers we have made," the statement said.

Division of Wildlife Director Russ George said the action was appropriate.

"We have had good faith and earnest discussions with Coors over the past year about the actual damage to the resource and what steps are appropriate to rectify that damage," George said.

"Now that it's been a year, we feel it's our duty as the state's wildlife agency to file the complaint to protect Colorado's aquatic resource and recover damages caused by this discharge. We will continue to meet with Coors to discuss this issue."

Earlier this week, Coors and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment agreed the company would pay a $117,280 cash fine and complete a thorough study of its wastewater plant.

The health department originally ordered Coors to pay $98,000 toward a project to clean up mine wastes in the Clear Creek area. The Environmental Protection Agency Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), independent agency of the U.S. government, with headquarters in Washington, D.C. It was established in 1970 to reduce and control air and water pollution, noise pollution, and radiation and to ensure the safe handling and  criticized that plan.
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Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 3, 2001
Words:403
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