Butte Sites

The Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site and separate Operable Units, in the context of the greater western Montana environment that was impacted by historic mining and smelting damages. Cleanup is ongoing across the basin. Map from the EPA Five Year Review of the Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site, Part 6: Butte Priority Soils Operable Unit, Figures.

The Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site and separate Operable Units, in the context of the greater western Montana environment that was impacted by historic mining and smelting damages. Cleanup is ongoing across the basin. Map from the EPA Five Year Review of the Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site, Part 6: Butte Priority Soils Operable Unit, Figures.

EPA has divided the environmental impacts found at Butte area Superfund sites into closely-interrelated “Operable Units.” The main Operable Units in the greater Butte Superfund area are:

  • Butte Priority Soils/Butte Residential Soils, which includes most of urban uptown Butte and Walkerville.
  • Berkeley Pit & Flooded Mines, which includes the historic underground mines of Butte, flooded with contaminated water since 1982, and the connected Berkeley Pit.
  • Lower Area One, the site of the former Colorado and Butte Reduction Works tailings, as well as a reach of Silver Bow Creek, and the Butte Treatment Lagoons.
  • West Camp & Travona Mine, which represent the western drainage of the Butte hill, and is largely distinct from the eastern drainage that flows into the Berkeley Pit through the flooded underground mines.
  • Non-Priority Soils (Westside Soils), which includes the areas of mine dumps to the west and north of urban uptown Butte and Montana Tech. The site has not been thoroughly studied. Recently, the EPA began referring to the site as Westside Soils. For most of the Superfund process, the area has been referred to as Non-Priority Soils. The area is a popular recreation spot for Butte residents.
  • Montana Pole & Treating Site, which contains different contaminants than most other sites due to its function as a chemical timber treatment plant, and is handled as a distinct site by the EPA.
Superfund Operable Units in the greater Butte area. Map from the EPA Record of Decision (ROD) for the Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site (2006).

Superfund Operable Units in the greater Butte area. Map from the EPA Record of Decision (ROD) for the Butte/Silver Bow Creek Superfund Site (2006).

 

Community Involvement Plan (2012-2013)

In March 2013, EPA released the updated Community Involvement Plan (CIP) for the Butte Priority Soils Operable Unit (BPSOU). The updated CIP is available for download in the Superfund Library, or in hard copy at CTEC and at the EPA’s offices in Butte and Helena.

Five Year Review (2010-2011)

In early 2011, EPA issued an EPA 5-Year Review Summary for the site, which includes brief descriptions of ongoing environmental problems. EPA recently completed the third Five-Year Review Report for the Silver Bow Creek/Butte Area site. This large document is divided by OU, and all parts of the report and associated documents can be downloaded below, or via the Superfund Library.

NameSizeHits
NameSizeHits
EPA Silver Bow Creek/Butte Five Year Review Report (2011)
Annual Update to the Butte/SBC 5-Year Review (2011)27.5 KiB555
Bulletin #10 - 5-Year Review (December 2010)398.7 KiB627
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 1: Site-Wide Review Summary (June 2011)308.5 KiB626
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte - Volume 1, Appendix A: Community Interviews (June 2011)535.5 KiB737
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte - Volume 1, Appendix B: Final Applicable or Relevant & Appropriate Requirements (ARARs) Review Technical Memorandum (June 2011)293.4 KiB688
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 2: Streamside Tailings Operable Unit (June 2011)1.9 MiB1272
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 2: Appendices A-H (June 2011)21.0 MiB672
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 3: Butte Mine Flooding Operable Unit (June 2011) 644.3 KiB831
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 3, Appendix A: Site Inspection Photographs & Monitoring Well Inspections (June 2011) 1.5 MiB766
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 3, Appendix B: Responsiveness Summary (June 2011) 96.3 KiB730
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 3, Figures (June 2011) 2.1 MiB801
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 4: Warm Springs Ponds Active and Inactive Operable Units (June 2011)701.8 KiB823
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 4, Appendix A: Site Inspection Photographs812.0 KiB639
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 4, Appendix B: Responsiveness Summary (June 2011)140.7 KiB699
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 4: Figures (June 2011)10.7 MiB652
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 5: Rocker Timber Framing and Treating Plant Operable Unit (June 2011)510.5 KiB797
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site, Volume 5, Appendix A: Site Inspection Photographs (June 2011)590.7 KiB570
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 5, Appendix B: Town Pump Public Water Supply Data (June 2011)76.2 KiB623
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site, Volume 5, Appendix C: Responsiveness Summary (June 2011)70.7 KiB688
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 5, Appendix D: Controlled Groundwater Area Evaluation (June 2011)3.2 MiB907
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site, Volume 5, Figures (June 2011)6.4 MiB648
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6: Butte Priority Soils Operable Unit (June 2011)779.0 KiB767
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix A: Site Photos (June 2011) 920.0 KiB579
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix B: Residential Metals Abatement Program Access (June 2011)3.2 MiB671
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix C: Sites Visited During Inspection (June 2011) 12.4 MiB713
Link to Download 5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix D: 2007-2009 Field Evaluation Forms (June 2011)53.2 KiB3584
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix E: Operation & Maintenance Forms (June 2011) 1.1 MiB647
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix F: Notice of Violation, BSB Wastewater Treatment (June 2011) 524.4 KiB761
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Appendix G: Responsiveness Summary (June 2011)1.9 MiB1099
5-Year Review Report for SBC/Butte Area Superfund Site - Volume 6, Figures12.2 MiB764

Hard copies of the Five-Year Review Report can be viewed at three EPA Information Repositories: the EPA Butte Office at 400 North Main Street, Room 339, the CTEC Office at 27 West Park Street, and the EPA Helena Office at 10 West 15th Street.

 

Further Exploration

Other sites/Operable Units not properly in Butte, but with close interrelationships with the Butte sites, include:

Recent EPA Bulletins

EPA updates about the greater Butte area Superfund sites can be downloaded below. For a more complete listing of past EPA bulletins and related documents, refer to the Superfund Library.

EPA Bulletin #15 – Summer Summary 2011
EPA Bulletin #15 – Summer Summary 2011
SBCButte_15-SummerSummary2011.pdf
248.9 KiB
608 Downloads
Details...
EPA Bulletin #16 – 2011 Winter Updates
EPA Bulletin #16 – 2011 Winter Updates
SBCButte_16-2011WinterUpdates.pdf
1.2 MiB
580 Downloads
Details...

 

 

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