Duchesne River: EPA reaches settlement with landowners
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced a settlement with Karl and David Lamb to remedy environmental impacts associated with alleged Clean Water Act (CWA) violations in Duchesne County, Utah.
The Administrative Order on Consent (AOC) between EPA and the Lambs remedies unpermitted dredge and fill activities, and associated discharges, to the Duchesne River and its adjacent floodplain on the Uintah and Ouray Reservation.
Under the terms of the AOC, the Lambs have agreed to submit and implement a restoration plan to remedy the impacts of the earthmoving activities on the Duchesne River.
EPA is working collaboratively with the Ute Indian Tribe and the Lambs to oversee the completion of all actions required by the order.
“The Clean Water Act safeguards our rivers, lakes, and streams and protects the communities that depend on them,” said Suzanne Bohan, Director of EPA Region 8’s Enforcement & Compliance Assurance Division.
“With this action, EPA is ensuring the proper restoration of vital river and floodplain resources, including lands held in trust for the Ute Indian Tribe.”
EPA alleges that in July of 2019, the Lambs used a track hoe to excavate materials from the Duchesne River and floodplain; and partially construct a diversion channel that ran onto a neighboring parcel held in trust for the Ute Indian Tribe.
EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers conducted a site visit at the Lamb’s property in September of 2019, and confirmed the activities listed above had taken place.
These activities resulted in discharges of dredged and fill material into and along approximately 0.96 acres of the Duchesne River and floodplain, increasing the potential for erosion and sedimentation within the river.