NewsMissoula County


Spring runoff concerns voiced over former Smurfit-Stone mill site

A large flood at the abandoned mill site could wash toxic chemicals into the Clark Fork River.
Clark Fork River Smurfit
Posted at 8:44 AM, May 02, 2023

MISSOULA - The warmer temperatures have some people worried about spring run-off, especially for the Clark Fork River near the former Smurfit-Stone mill site.

A large flood at the site could wash toxic chemicals into the river which is why a group came together on Monday to discuss concerns about the abandoned mill.

The group — which is comprised of people from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to the Missoula City-County Health Department — wants to collaboratively develop an approach to sampling at the Smurfit Stone Site.
Monday's meeting focused on groundwater sites where samples containing dioxins and PCBs have been collected. Toxins like these can spread into the Clark Fork through the many groundwater pathways that surround the former mill site.

The samples will now be used to find a science-based cleanup process. The EPA normally samples Smurfit in the fall but many are calling for quarterly testing.