Environmental activists are suing Kennecott Utah Copper over air pollution issues. The clean air groups have been saying that the Bingham copper mine being operated by Kennecott Utah Copper is kicking up too much dust and should be shut down.
The activist groups have repeated said that the mining company was in violation of the federal Clean Air Act although the state of Utah pollution regulators have let Kennecott Utah Copper ramp up its mining operations in the state. The company was not keeping adherence to a 1994 limit on production at the Bingham Canyon Mine.
They have filed a federal lawsuit against the mining company on Monday. The groups that are involved in the case include the Utah Moms for Clean Air, Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment and WildEarth Guardians.
In response to the lawsuit the company has said that the claims are without merit and that it was not violating pollution standards. Kyle Bennett, Kennecott Utah Copper spokesman said that they operated within strict provisions established by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Utah Division of Air Quality. And those limits have been established to protect human health.
Dr. Brian Moench with Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment disagrees as he said that Kennecott was responsible for a third of the air pollution throughout Salt Lake valley. He added that on their worst polluted days, it was comparable to active first-hand smoking, for our children and pregnant mothers.