December 3, 2008

The Montana Dept. of Environmental Quality (DEQ) reports that the agency has completed another five-mile section of the Silver Bow Creek Superfund cleanup. That section includes Ramsay Flats, an area already being repopulated by trout. Read the press release below.

MT DEQ completes major section of Silver Bow Creek environmental cleanup
HELENA – The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has finished cleanup of a major, five-mile stretch of Silver Bow Creek extending from the Port of Montana downstream to Miles Crossing.

“We finished seeding it yesterday and we’re done,” says DEQ Project Manager, Joel Chavez.

The $17.5 million project began in 2004 and is a significant part of the overall $100 million remediation and restoration operation that has been underway since 1999 to clean up 22 miles of Silver Bow Creek contaminated by mine waste.

“Many people in the community seem pleased with the work. Folks are saying ‘looking good’ and ‘looks great’,” says Chavez. “This site is in their front yard and generations of people have been looking at a dead zone that isn’t dead anymore.”

The five-mile area includes Ramsay Flats where live trout have now been found.

Approximately 65 percent of the 22 miles has been cleaned up. The entire project, which extends from the I-15 and I-90 bridges, West of Butte, to Warm Springs Ponds, is expected to be completed by 2012.

In 1983, the Silver Bow Creek/Butte area was listed as a Federal Superfund site. Funds from a legal settlement with ARCO are paying for the cleanup.

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