- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 24, 2015

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - The Environmental Protection Agency is taking public comment on its proposal to place the Columbia Falls Aluminum Co. site on its National Priorities List for Superfund designation.

The listing is subject to a 60-day comment period beginning on Thursday. It would mean the site was eligible for further investigation to see if there are enough hazardous substances to warrant a federal cleanup.

The plant about two miles northeast of Columbia Falls operated as an aluminum smelter between 1955 and 2009. The EPA and the state of Montana have determined that a comprehensive investigation is necessary to identify ways to clean up the cyanide, fluoride, arsenic, chromium, lead and selenium in the soils to address health and environmental concerns.

CFAC opposes the Superfund designation, arguing it will slow cleanup efforts and hinder redevelopment.

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