Home » Goals & Objectives


The Animas River Stakeholders Group’s mission is to improve water quality and aquatic habitats in the Animas River watershed through a collaborative process designed to encourage participation from all interested parties.


  1. To monitor the water quality and aquatic habitats of the Animas River and its tributaries and provide access to the public of this information.
    1. Determine which parameters presently limit aquatic life and habitats.
    2. Determine levels of reduction of those parameters necessary to substantially improve aquatic life.
  2. To analyze all water quality information within the Upper Animas Watershed to determine the extent and effects of metal contamination from natural geologic processes and historic mining, and to identify major source locations.
  3. To determine the feasibility of remediation of sites discovered to be major contributors of metals or related contaminants.
  4. To use information from monitoring and feasibility determinations to develop a Basin-wide remediation plan consisting of cost estimates, possible technologies, and probable candidate sites.
    1. To reduce metal concentrations in the Animas River to a level which will maximize aquatic life while maintaining costs acceptable to the general public.
    2. To remain flexible, allowing prioritization of sites to change in response to technological developments, availability of funds, owner cooperation, regulatory changes, and other factors which may be beyond the control of the Stakeholders Group.

  5. To encourage private and public entities to reduce the amount of contaminants entering the Animas River from abandoned mine sites through the following means:
    1. Educate the public concerning environmental issues involved; Assist in the development of cost-effective remediation technologies.
    2. Encourage the implementation of demonstration technologies.
    3. Assist in the procurement of funds necessary to attain the goals and objectives of the Group, including funds for voluntary site remediation.

  6. To affect changes in current regulations and permitting procedures which would encourage voluntary approaches to remediation.


The Animas River Stakeholders Group recognizes that historic mining sites and related complexes are an important and integral part of the Basin’s cultural assets and heritage. Prior to each remediation effort Stakeholder policy encourages that each remediation project be reviewed by the San Juan County Commissioners for possible historical impacts. The Commissioners have a county Historical Review Committee which provides comments and recommendations.