UM graduate student learns deeper history of Anaconda Smelter Stack – by Staff (NBC Montana – March 25, 2023)

MISSOULA, Mont. — A University of Montana Ph.D. student set out to study superfund cleanup in Anaconda, and her conversations with residents often turned to the smelter stack in town. Megan Moore interviewed residents and looked into how memories can offer more insight into mining legacies and cleanup. She found that in Anaconda, people often talked about the 585-foot smelter stack, which closed in 1980.

“I think there’s a tension between some community members about the stack, and that’s something that came through in our interviews and surveys. But what really was important was that people are very connected to it, often in different ways, but it’s something that should be paid attention to here in Anaconda and in other communities,” Moore told NBC Montana.

Moore will defend her dissertation in May and plans to make reports available to the Anaconda community. Some of her work will also be published in academic journals. UM released the following information: A funny thing happened to University of Montana graduate student Megan Moore on her way to writing her doctoral thesis.

The forest and conservation sciences student set out two years ago to gather community input in Anaconda, Montana, about the ongoing Superfund mining cleanup along the Clark Fork River. She expected to hear a lot about how long the process has taken – 40 years so far – and shared experiences with contaminated soil remediation and the Superfund’s impact on daily life in this historic town of 9,500 residents.

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