October 19, 2021
BOISE — The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) seeks public comment on a proposed settlement action with Idaho Cobalt Company for unpermitted discharges of mining adit outflow to the North Fork of Iron Creek.
Idaho Cobalt Company owns and operates the Iron Creek Mine in Lemhi County, Idaho. Through a reconnaissance inspection and subsequent on-site inspection, DEQ determined there was a discharge from one of the mine adits. This type of discharge requires an Idaho Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (IPDES) permit under the “Rules Regulating the Idaho Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Program” (IDAPA 58.01.25.102), and the company had not applied for nor had been issued an IPDES permit at the time of discovery.
DEQ prepared a consent order that directs Idaho Cobalt Company to apply for an IPDES permit or take steps to cease the mine discharge, including developing a preliminary engineering report, construction plan, monitoring plan, operations and maintenance plan, and record plans and specifications. In addition, the company is required to pay a civil penalty of $95,110.40.
Written comments on the proposed settlement action will be accepted through November 19, 2021, at 5 p.m. MDT. This proposed settlement may be amended or adjusted in the future, in which case, DEQ may provide for additional public comment depending on the significance of the changes.
The consent order is available for review at DEQ’s State Office (1410 N. Hilton St.) and on DEQ’s Public Comment Opportunities page.
Submit comments electronically on DEQ’s website or by mail or email:
IPDES Compliance and Enforcement Officer
Idaho Department of Environmental Quality
1410 N Hilton St.
Boise, ID 83706