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Montana Requires Further Cleanup At Former Butte Pole Plant

 Construction at the former Montana Pole and Treating Plant, courtesy of DEQ and TetraTech
DEQ, TertraTech
Construction at the former Montana Pole and Treating Plant, courtesy of DEQ and TetraTech

The state of Montana is adding extra cleanup measures at a former wood treatment plant turned Superfund site in Butte.

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality on Monday released its reasons for pursuing more stringent environmental protection, among them that levels of the contaminant dioxin at the Montana Pole & Treating Plant fall short of current cleanup standards.

Dioxin is one of the chemicals the plant produced during operation from the 1940s to the 1980s. Exposure to dioxin may cause cancer, skin conditions and other health risks in humans. The state’s new plan requires storing the waste securely on site.

Remediation at the Montana Pole and Treating Plant began in the 1990s. DEQ says this round of cleanup is expected to begin this summer to make the site available for industrial or commercial use.

DEQ will hold a neighborhood meeting on Apr. 20 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and an EPA community public meeting on Apr. 26 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Participants can sign up to attend the meetings held via Zoom and receive instructions about how to access the meeting by registering at:

More information to comment can be found here.

Copyright 2021 Yellowstone Public Radio

Kayla Desroches reports for Yellowstone Public Radio in Billings. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and stayed in the city for college, where she hosted a radio show that featured serialized dramas like the Shadow and Suspense. In her pathway to full employment, she interned at WNYC in New York City and KTOO in Juneau, Alaska. She then spent a few years on the island of Kodiak, Alaska, where she transitioned from reporter to news director before moving to Montana.
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