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A description of the environmental impacts of mining near Butte, MT via biomonitoring.
Anderson, PhilipZabel, AustinMaddin, BrendanMcCrady, MelissaHayes, Kevin
In the 1880s, Butte, Montana was home to one of the richest mineral deposits in the world. Today, the region is home of two of the most toxic superfunds sites in America, the Anaconda Smelter Site and the Berkeley Pit. In an effort to describe past and present air pollutant emissions in the Butte area we employed biomonitoring and dendrochronological techniques. Pine needle, bark, and core samples were collected from trees adjacent to the superfund sites. These samples were digested and analyzed using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS). The goal of this analysis is to quantitatively determine the levels of heavy metals over the last century and if this data can be related to mining activities in the region. Our results may indicate the cease of smelting activities in the 1980s and what if any persistent heavy metal contamination exists in the area.
BiomonitoringHeavy metalsAir pollutionMiningFaculty of Science and Technology (FST) research day
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 Internationalhttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/
Undergraduate Student Research