Helena—The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is seeking public input on a draft plan submitted by Bonner Property Development (BPD) to remove waste in the Bonner Mill Site Repository and dispose of the waste in the Republic Landfill in Missoula County, Mont. DEQ is currently reviewing the plan.
The former Bonner Mill site supplied lumber to mining operations and was discovered to have contaminants in the sediment of the onsite cooling pond in 2006. Cleanup was completed in 2016 and included disposal of certain Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB) contaminated soils in an onsite repository. The existing repository was designed to protect the Blackfoot River from contamination during flooding events.
The current landowner of the site, BPD, has submitted a request for DEQ’s approval to remove the remaining waste in the 3-acre repository and properly dispose of it in the Missoula landfill.
Currently, the repository is performing as designed and remains protective of human health and the environment, and DEQ is not requiring any party to remove or alter the repository.
According to requirements put in place to protect the remedy, BPD must submit a proposal to DEQ to disturb or move the repository. DEQ’s evaluation of the submitted draft plan will review that the proposed work will not conflict with ongoing work at the facility and that the work conducted will not spread, worsen or otherwise exacerbate the contamination. DEQ will review the plan for all other relevant factors that may affect protectiveness of human health and the environment and that wastes are disposed of in a proper landfill.
If DEQ approves the proposed removal plan, BPD must sample the repository site after the work is completed to confirm that all contaminated waste is removed from the repository. After that sampling is complete and shows all the contaminated waste has been removed, BPD will then backfill the disturbed area with clean materials and properly reclaim and revegetate the disturbed area.
DEQ will consider public input in its review of BPD’s draft plan and will post all public input received on the DEQ website. Public input will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Oct. 9, 2020. To view the draft plan documents and provide input electronically, visit the DEQ website at: http://deq.mt.gov/Public/publiccomment Input can also be mailed to: DEQ, Attn: Federal Superfund Public Comment, MT DEQ/WMRD P.O. Box 200901, Helena, MT 59620.