Jordan Candler / April 15, 2016

What Mine Spill? EPA’s McCarthy Wins ‘Conservationist of the Year’

No, seriously.

Last summer was not a good one for many residents in the West thanks to malfeasance on the part of the EPA. In August, three million gallons of toxic sludge went flowing into the Animus River after an EPA contractor breached a retaining wall. Even worse, officials knew about the “blowout” danger but proceeded anyway. The situation prompted the National Wildlife Federation to scathingly respond, “The EPA owes the public answers, including the short and long term impacts of the spill, how it happened, and what it’s going to take to make it right.”

So it’s rather ironic NWF is now showering the agency with praise. Yesterday the group announced it “will recognize five notable individuals for their outstanding contributions to wildlife conservation at the Conservation Achievement Awards.” Among them is Gina McCarthy, who was awarded “Conservationist of the Year.” Strangely, the group writes that McCarthy “spearheads the agency’s commitment to addressing environmental justice concerns and to making a visible difference in communities.” Enclaves like the Navajo Nation that are still looking for answers surely beg to differ.

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