BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- The Environmental Protection Agency and the Coeur d'Alene tribe forged a $208,500 settlement with seven mining companies for their share of the estimated $2 billion cleanup of Silver Valley pollution.

The tentative agreement on the Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Complex Superfund Site was published Thursday in the Federal Register.

The pact that includes some defunct companies represents just a tiny sliver of what larger companies are paying to resolve federal lawsuits.

Hecla Mining Co. is paying $263 million and an earlier 2009 settlement with Asarco came to some $436 million.

Cami Grandinetti, the EPA's manager of the cleanup, said her agency struck the deal with the small mining companies after determining what they or their owners were capable of paying toward a remediation effort that's due to take decades.

Copyright 2011 The AP.

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