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Arsenic leak at Swedish gold mine

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07:33 CEST+02:00
Large quantities of arsenic have leaked out into a fresh water repository near a gold mine operated by Dragon Mining in Västerbotten in northern Sweden.

During the third quarter this year, the mine released 54 kilogrammes of arsenic, 27 times annual amount allowed under current environmental regulations.

The country administrative board is now set a November 14th deadline for the company to come up with a plan for dealing with the poisonous discharge.

“We take this matter very seriously,” said Robert Erixon, an environmental protection official with the Västerbotten county board, to the Västerbottens-Kuriren newspaper.

No arsenic has leaked out into the surrounding area, which includes a nature preserve with wetlands as well as the Paubäcken basin, home to the rare freshwater pearl mussel.

Dragon Mining's CEO Karl-Erik Marttala had no explanation for the leak, but said that the company is doing all that it can to solve the problem.

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