DENVER — Colorado’s largest water utility is fighting a proposal to increase the levels of the metallic element molybdenum (mo-lyb-de-num) allowed in the state’s rivers and streams.

The Denver Post reports that Denver Water opposes a request by operators of the Climax Mine above Leadville to raise the limits for streams used for both domestic water and agricultural irrigation statewide.

The move would save the mine money on water treatment. Denver Water treatment plants do not have the ability to remove molybdenum, which is used to harden steel.

The mine has submitted studies done on rats funded by its parent company, Freeport-McMoRan, to back up its proposal. Denver Water says that’s not adequate evidence.

State water quality control commissioners are set to decide the issue in December.


Information from: The Denver Post, http://www.denverpost.com