EPA extends comments on Smurfit sampling, but only a few days

Posted at 4:59 PM, Aug 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-07 18:59:28-04

MISSOULA – The Environmental Protection Agency is giving area residents a little bit more time to comment on the next round of sampling for contamination at the old Smurfit Stone mill site in Frenchtown.

EPA had planned to start additional sampling this week on the mill property. The agency is hoping to do more sampling in the heart of the mill property, where there are suspected levels of a variety of contaminants generated through decades of industrial operations. 

EPA team leaders have expressed confidence in their past sampling methods, saying they’re finding most contaminants aren’t at a level that would cause major risks to human health.

But members of the Frenchtown Smurfit Stone Community Advisory Group have complained the sampling isn’t extensive enough, and last week they wrote the agency saying the community wasn’t being given adequate time to comment.

EPA is granting an extension for comment, but only until this Wednesday.