2016 Winter Lecture Series


A Community Activist perspective on the Summitville Mining Disaster and the Alamosa River Watershed

Summitville Mine Image

by Cindy Medina

Alamosa Riverkeepers


7 PM, Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Room 130 Porter Hall

Adams State University


Take a bumpy ride into the San Juan Mountains with Cindy Medina, Alamosa Riverkeeper, as she describes the worst mining disaster in Colorado. In 1993, the Summitville Mine was designated a CERCLA Superfund site. The illegal discharge of cyanide and heavy metals from the heap leach pad destroyed all aquatic life in the Alamosa River.
The construction of the new water treatment plant has improved the water quality in the river. Twenty three years and $200 million later, reclamation at the site nears completion with on-going operations at the treatment plant.
Ms. Medina will explain the $5 million Natural Resource Damage settlement that funded projects that helped to restore the Alamosa River. The first instream flow project was decreed in Water Court and the bank stabilization projects are nearly completed. In the summer of 2015, a 22.5 German brown trout was caught in Terrace Reservoir.

About the Speaker

Cindy Medina lives in Colorado's San Luis Valley where her family has lived since the 1800s. She helped found the Alamosa RIVERKEEPER® in response to the Summitville mining disaster. Alamosa Riverkeeper gained membership to the Waterkeeper Alliance, a well-respected international environmental organization. In partnership with the Colorado Water Conservation Board, Alamosa Riverkeeper implemented the first instream flow in the Alamosa River. In 2015, the Colorado Water Trust awarded Ms. Medina the David Getches Flowing Waters Award "for restoring and preserving healthy Colorado rivers."

The Colorado Field Institute is a nonprofit corporation organized in 2005 to promote greater stewardship of the natural and cultural resources within the San Luis Valley. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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