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Archived Waste Management News Articles:

Conference to Focus on Achieving Mercury Reductions 03/30/2005
May 23-25, EPA New England, Maine Department of Environmental Protection, and Northeast Waste Management Officials’ Association are sponsoring the "Achieving Mercury Reduction in Products and Waste" conference. Federal, state, tribal, local government, and university-based mercury reduction program coordinators, staff, and regulators from around the U. S. are invited to attend and share ideas and expertise. The conference will be in Portland Maine and will feature mercury reduction in specific sectors (schools, dental clinics, etc.), policy and legislative issues, and information about mercury added products.
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Montana: Department of Agriculture Sponsors Waste Pesticide Collection 03/28/2005
The Montana Department of Agriculture is sponsoring a waste pesticide collection program on June 21 in Townsend, June 22 in Bozeman and June 23 in Dillon. There is a fee to participate in this program, although it is less than other legal alternatives, and this is a non-regulatory, service program.
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Montana: 2005 Waste Not Conference 03/18/2005
The public is invited to attend the 2005 Waste Not Conference located at Chico Hot Springs Resort in Prey, Montana. The conference will be held April 12-13, 2005 and provides educational workshops on a variety of environmental issues facing the state. Sponsors include the Headwaters Cooperative Recycling, the Montana Department of Environmental Quality and the National Park Service.
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Utah: State Accepts More Hazardous Waste But Behind Others 03/11/2005
The amount of hazardous waste Utah has accepted has quadrupled in three years, but still is less than what other states accept. Over 146,413 tons of hazardous waste has been imported to Utah in 2002 and 2003. In 2000-2001, the state imported 35,677 tons of hazardous waste. States that have accepted more waste than Utah during the reporting period include: Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Texas, Illinois, South Carolina and Missouri.
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Colorado, Montana, Utah: EPA Awards $2.6 Million in Small Business Innovation Research Contracts 03/10/2005
Companies from Colorado, Montana, and Utah have received a portion of $2.6 million in Small Business Innovation Research grants from the EPA. The program is awarded to small businesses to control and monitor air and water pollution, manage solid and hazardous waste, prevent pollution, and ensure safe buildings and drinking water security.
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Utah: Newly Discovered Bacteria Dine on Carcinogens 02/18/2005
At Utah State University, biologists are receiving a contract worth nearly $1.5 million from the Department of Energy to research genetic information on five microbes that attack, or eat away, carcinogens and toxins in contaminated soils. The biologists will be working with other engineers on this project. The newly discovered microbes were found in Libby, Montana at a landsite contaminated by chemical carcinogens. Professor Ronald Sims found the site to be relatively free of toxins. The results of the research can help scientists better understand and utilize the organisms to destroy contaminants in the environment.
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NPPR Releases Position on State and Tribal P2 funding 02/15/2005
The National Pollution Prevention Roundtable has released its position in regard to grant funding for state and tribal pollution prevention programs. The Board of Directors for NPPR has established a total of nine resolutions and recommendations that include: EPA evaluation of programmatic activities; seeking $8 million in funding as authorized by the 1990 P2 Act; and reevaluating the grant allocation formula.
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Montana: State Gets First Glass Pulverizer 02/08/2005
Montana will put it's first mobile glass pulverizer to use during this summer. It will make its debut on the Montana City interchange south of Helena by recycling bottles and other refuse into road-building material. Montana Department of Environmental Quality Program Manager Brian Spangler says the pulverizer can produce three to five tons of filler in an hour.
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Wyoming: Yellowstone National Park Scheduled to Get More Funding in New Budget 02/08/2005
Yellowstone National Park is scheduled to get more funding from President Bush's proposed budget. Yellowstone's budget will increase from $29.8 million last year to $30.7 million next year. The budget also includes money to replace the wastewater treatment plant, and to replace the visitor center at Old Faithful.
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Colorado: Eagle River Hearing Delayed Until December 02/07/2005
The Colorado Water Quality Control Commission has delayed a rulemaking hearing concerning water quality standards revisions for two segments of the Eagle River until December 2005. The revisions to the Eagle River standards being proposed are a result of a study of the effects of a Superfund cleanup of nearby Eagle Mine.
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Tribal Compliance Chosen as a Priority 02/07/2005
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) selected tribal compliance as a national enforcement and compliance priority for fiscal years 2005 through 2007. This is the first time EPA has selected tribal environmental issues as a national priority. Selection as a priority offers tribes and EPA the opportunity to focus on building tribal capacity and increase direct implementation in Indian country and other tribal areas around EPA’s three initial focus areas: drinking water, schools, and solid waste.
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Colorado, Utah: Schools to Participate in Recycling Contest 01/31/2005
Several schools in region 8 are set to compete to see which campus is the top recycler. The University of Colorado, Colorado State University, Brigham Young University and Utah State University, will compete against nearly 50 other schools. The contest is called RecycleMania, and it begins January 30 and runs through April 10. The contest is sponsored by the EPA.
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South Dakota: Release of 2004 Annual Water Report and Plans for 2005 01/27/2005
The South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources has compiled an Annual Report which describes water development and waste management activities during the past year. The report describes expenditures from the Water and Environment Fund that supported the activities of 56 of these projects.
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Montana: Spill Management and Reporting Policy 01/26/2005
The Montana Department of Environmental Quality has written a policy to provide guidance to the public on how and when to report spills. This guidance gives specific instances in order to help the public understand applicable laws and reporting procedures. The policy also gives additional links on enforcement responsibilities.
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P2 for Petroleum Refineries 01/24/2005
Petroleum refineries consistently rank among the top ten facilities for Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) emissions and hazardous waste generation in most states in Region 8. With 2003-2004 funding from EPA Region 8, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality evaluated seven oil refineries in Wyoming, North Dakota, Montana and Colorado to evaluate the industry’s voluntary initiatives to implement pollution prevention and waste minimization. The final report for this project, including a description of ten widely-used voluntary measures identified as well as twenty-one more innovative possibilities, was recently published on the web.
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Montana: DEQ Launches New School Labs Web Site 01/21/2005
Montana Department of Environmental Quality has developed a website to address the problem of chemical storage in school laboratories. They have an online survey for middle and high schools to collect information on the types of chemicals present in school science labs. The survey will help schools and school districts assess safety risks associated with hazardous, outdated, and unused lab chemicals. The website also provides resources and helpful information on proper management and disposal of chemicals.
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Colorado: New Lab Delves Into Plants For Fuels 01/20/2005
A new facility designed to give scientists unprecedented insights into the chemical and biological reactions which can transform renewable plant and waste materials into useful sources of energy was dedicated at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The new laboratory will support development of new technologies for bio-refineries, which will produce transportation fuels and a range of other products.
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South Dakota: DENR Approves Nearly $47 million in Grants For Water, Wastewater, and Solid Waste Projects 01/07/2005
The South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources approved nearly $47 million in grants or low-interest loans for water, wastewater and solid waste projects. The grants include two Consolidated Water Facilities Construction Program grants, seven Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program loans, one Solid Waste Management Program grant, and four Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Program loans.
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EPA Releases CAFO Permit Rules 01/05/2005
The EPA has released the Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) final permit rules. The new rules cover existing CAFO's, newly defined CAFO's, new discharges, and designated CAFO's. There are also documents for permit deadlines and a producers compliance guide.
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Most Printer Cartridges Not Recycled 01/03/2005
A study conducted by Harris Interactive shows that 55.6 percent of American consumers do not recycle their printer cartridges. As a result, there is an additional 40 million pounds of waste in the landfills. Almost all printer cartridges can be returned for reuse, with options ranging from city collection facilities to drop-off bins at local retailers.
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Denver Airport Honored with Environmental Award 12/30/2004
Denver International Airport has been accepted into the Colorado Environmental Leadership Program because of the airport’s efforts to improve the environment. Some of the airport's achievements include: reducing hazardous solid waste, a voluntary cleanup of construction debris, and recycling nearly two million gallons of propylene glycol. The program is administered by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
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Insurance Company Wants Environmental Training for Auto Body Shops 12/29/2004
Allstate is asking more than 3200 auto body repair facilities that participate in its direct repair program, to complete an autobody-specific environmental and safety-training program. This program is an online course designed to focus on safety and environmental issues specific to the vehicle repair industry. Items covered in the program include how to properly handle and dispose of hazardous materials including antifreeze, oil, and paint.
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Montana: Schools Heat With Biomass Energy 12/29/2004
Thompson Falls Public Schools will be replacing their costly diesel boiler with a biomass boiler using a $200,000 federal grant from the forest service's Fuel For Schools Program. The bulk of the fuel for the new boiler will come from wood chips supplied by a local lumber company. The school district will also use logging slash to supplement the Thompson River Lumber material. Thompson Falls will be the third school district in Western Montana to use biomass fuels for heating.
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Colorado: Students Recycle Unwanted Computers 12/23/2004
In Colorado Springs, students are dismanteling computers, printers, and keyboards that are going to be recycled at the new Waste-Not Recycling center. A partnership has developed between the company and Community Intersections, an organization that trains special-needs high school transition students and adults for work force placement. The students are learning valuable skills and Waste-Not receives electronic castoffs that are ready for a second life.
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Colorado: County Awards Funding to Divert Waste From Area Landfills 12/16/2004
The Boulder County Board of County Commissioners awarded a total of $50,000 to eight waste reduction programs for the Resource Conservation Division’s Community Outreach Program 2005. These programs are designed to reduce the amount of landfill waste.
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Colorado: Health Workers Honored For Removal Of Dangerous Chemicals 12/09/2004
Three employees of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's Hazardous Materials and Waste Management Division, and a Denver attorney have been honored by the EPA for their work in removing hazardous chemicals from Colorado schools and in training first responders to deal with such problems. It has been a cooperative effort between the school districts, fire departements, local health departments and other agencies. Niswonger, one of the awardees, said that dangerous chemicals have been found across Colorado in locations ranging from elementary schools to colleges.
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Utah: Utah State Wastewater Treatment Training Center Receives Award 11/19/2004
Utah State University’s Utah On-Site Wastewater Treatment Training Progam recently received the Lynn Thatcher Award. The award was given by the Utah Environmental Health Association and was established to honor an entity outside the UEHA that has made a significant contribution to the field of environmental health.
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Utah: Characteristics of Successful Manure Management 11/16/2004
John Harrison, a Utah State University agriculture waste management specialist, says that animal feeding operations that successfully manage manure have two things in common. The operations have a manure storage facility designed specifically for the site and the operators proactively manage the manure storage facilities. He also explaned that the best designed waste handling facility without the management to go with it will not function to its full potential.
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South Dakota: DENR Board Awards Additional $450,000 for Mitchell Regional Landfill 11/12/2004
The state Board of Water and Natural Resources approved an additional $450,000 low-interest loan to Mitchell to help cover increased construction costs for a regional landfill being built near the city. The landfill will provide residents and businesses located in Davison, Hanson, and Hutchinson counties an environmentally safe place to dispose of solid wastes.
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Colorado: Colorado State Recycles 1.8 Million Pounds of Waste Per Year 11/10/2004
Colorado State University recycles 1.8 million pounds of wast per year and will celebrate this accomplishment during America Recycles Day on November 15. Also, the university last year became the first in the country to offer wind power to students living on campus.
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Montana: New Clean-Water Regulations Affect Animal Feeding Operations 11/10/2004
Animal feeding operators in Montana face broadened federal and state clean-water guidelines. Depending on the number of animals and how long they’re kept in pens or other enclosures where wastes can accumulate, water-quality regulators may consider the pens to be Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). The regulations apply to beef, dairy, swine, poultry, sheep and lamb and horse operations. Permits may be required, costing $2500 plus an additional $1000 per year for five years.
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Utah: Professor Sequences Environmentally Friendly Bacterium 11/04/2004
Utah State University Chemistry Professor Scott Ensign has received funding from the Department of Energy to complete the genetic blueprint of an environmentally important bacterium that can degrade toxic compounds produced through industrial processes and convert them into pharmaceutical products or renewable energy sources. It is also capable of converting carbon dioxide and turning it into sugars that can be used to make biodegradable plastics or other environmentally friendly substances.
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Dairymen Look For Solution to Waste 11/03/2004
Dairymen are waiting for a project in southern Idaho to be completed that would provide a financially feasible solution to cattle waste disposal. The project involves a prototype anaerobic digester that would break down manure during a five day process, leaving high quality methane that could be put directly into a natural gas pipeline.
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Montana: Integrated Waste Management Plan Revision 10/15/2004
Under the Integrated Waste Management Act of 1991, Montana Department of Environmental Quality prepares and implements a statewide Solid Waste Management Plan. This plan is a policy document to provide direction in implementing an integrated approach to solid waste management. There will be three public hearings concerning the proposed plan: October 25th in Missoula, October 26th in Great Falls, and November 8th in Billings. Comments on the 240 page draft revison can be emailed to
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2004 Clean Water Act Recognition Awards 10/06/2004
On Monday, October 4th, EPA announced the 29 first and second place winners of the 2004 National Clean Water Act Recognition Awards. The presentation of these awards helps raise the public's awareness of the pollution reduction efforts that their wastewater treatment plants make to improve the Nation's waters. Several in Region 8 received awards. They were: Central Davis Sewer District, Utah; Iowa Hill Water Reclamation Facility, Colorado; Metro Denver, Colorado; Parker Ag services, Colorado; Central Davis Sewer District, Utah.
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South Dakota: Governor Recommends More Than $3 million ForWater, Wastewater, and Recycling Projects 09/29/2004
The South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources approved eight grants and six loans for water, wastewater, and recycling projects recommended by Governor Rounds, totaling more than $3 million. A full listing of grant recipients is available online.
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Montana: State Employees Receive Governor 09/23/2004
Ninety-seven state employees received the Governor's Award for Excellence in Performance including Brian Spangler of Montana DEQ. Brian was chosen for his ability to form successful partnerships with government, private organizations and individuals including MDT, recycling businesses, landfill operators, and others to make recycling not only an environmental necessity, but a way to bring jobs to Montana.
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Colorado: $1.2 Million Environmental Penalty Assessed at Chrome Plating Facility 09/14/2004
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has finalized an agreement for collection of the penalty assessed against Power Engineering of Denver a facility specializing in refurbishing and chrome-plating crankshafts and pistons in marine engines to give them a longer wear life.
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Montana: Montana Department of Transportation to use glass cullet in road bases 09/10/2004
The Montana Department of Transportation announced it will soon receive a mobile glass pulverizer. The pulverizer will process glass cullet into a form suitable for use in asphalt road bases and landscaping. The pulverizer is the result of a cooperative effort among several public and private entities, all concerned with finding innovative ways to reuse materials that would otherwise go to a landfill.
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Most Valuable Pollution Prevention Awards Announced 09/02/2004
The 2004 recipients of the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable’s (NPPR) Most Valuable Pollution Prevention (MVP2) awards reduced pollution by 3 billion pounds, conserved 80 million KwH of electricity, all while cutting costs by $30 million. Award winners represent federal, state, and local government agencies, as well as non-profits, industries, and individuals that have demonstrated significant accomplishments in pollution prevention (P2).
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Montana: University Composting Report Released 09/01/2004
Montana Department of Environmental Quality just posted the recently released food waste composting demonstration project report. The University of Montana Dining Services project has been operating for the past year. The 68 page report describes project initiation, equipment and operations, initial experiences including lessons learned, outreach activities, and future plans.
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Office Depot and HP Offer Free In-Store Electronics Recycling Program 07/21/2004
Office Depot and Hewlett-Packard have developed the first free, nationwide, in-store electronics recycling program in the U.S. From now until September 6, customers can drop off any brand of unwanted electronics at any of Office Depot's more than 850 retail locations in the continental United States.
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Montana: New Report on Recycling 07/19/2004
Montana Department of Environmental Quality recently released a new report on economic and ecologic impacts of recycling in the state. The 8 page report compares recycling in Montana to the rest of the U.S. and shows current and favorable economic and environmental data in support of continued recycling efforts. Full text of the report is available here.
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Environmental Achievement Award for Colorado, Montana and North Dakota 07/07/2004
EPA presented an award to these three states for attaining environmental goals two years ahead of schedule. In the award announcement, EPA noted that “…as a result of the hard work and diligence by the states of Colorado, Montana and North Dakota, Region 8 became the first region in the country to achieve the 2005 goal of 70 percent of baseline facilities meeting the Ground Water EI."
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Montana: Glass Reuse Options 05/25/2004
The Montana Public Interest Research Group (MontPIRG) reports that Montana recycles less than 10 percent of generated waste and almost no glass, and suggests a money and resource saving network of medium-sized glass pulverizers shared by counties to grind tons of glass each year into reusable cullet (for roads, septic drainfields, garden mulch, etc.).
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Montana: Educator Receives International Award for Book on Economics and Ecology 05/24/2004
“Eco-nomics: What Everyone Should Know about Economics and the Environment” includes ten principles that provide a framework for developing sound environmental policy and discusses how ecological problems can often be resolved privately and voluntarily.
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Colorado: Solid Waste Growing Three Times as Fast as State Population 05/23/2004
Colorado is one of seven states that does not have a recycling or waste-reduction goal, and only three states do less recycling. Waste production is being fueled by consumer demand for convenience and the resulting disposable products.
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Colorado: Testing of Front Range Forests as Carbon Sinks 05/21/2004
The goal of Airborne Carbon in the Mountains Experiment is to get a better fix on how much carbon dioxide, or CO2, is removed from the air by mountain forests through the process of photosynthesis.
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North Dakota: Governor Proclaims Public Works Week 05/13/2004
Annual celebration of public works professionals who manage water, waste, transportation and building maintenance throughout the state.
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EPA Mercury Regulations Delayed 04/30/2004
Because of issues around use of unproven technologies and lack of immediacy, the comment period for proposed new regulations to limit the amount of toxic mercury emitted by power plants has been extended by two months, with the final action on the rule changed to March 2005.
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Heavy Reliance on Coal for Energy is Boosting Mercury Levels 04/29/2004
Emissions from coal burning electric utility plants represent the single largest unregulated industrial source of mercury emissions in the US (60% in 2001). When mercury from smokestacks falls to earth as particles or in rain, it sinks into lake and river sediment and is absorbed by bacteria and plants into the food chain.
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Colorado: Attorneys General in Western States Decry Military Pollution Exemptions 04/23/2004
Five Western attorneys general (one from Colorado) submitted a statement to two House subcommittees opposing any further relaxation of environmental standards for the military, stating that the Bush administration hasn't demonstrated the need to further ease environmental laws in the name of military readiness.
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Sustainability Index for Pulp and Paper Industry 04/21/2004
For the first time consumers can rank a paper mills' performance on social, economic, and environmentally preferred attributes.
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Colorado: Draft Permit Issued for Pueblo Chemical Depot 04/15/2004
A draft permit issued by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, sets the stage for destruction of chemical weapons stored at the Pueblo Chemical Depot.
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Montana: Governor Signs Cyanide Leach Mining Petition 04/14/2004
Governor Martz noted that adequate reclamation requirements would be necessary, but that keeping cyanide leach mining out of Montana only pushes the industry to other countries "where they have no environmental standards at all." It was banned by Montana voters in 1998, largely because of a multimillion dollar environmental cleanup bill.
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Wyoming: Congresswoman Allies with United Mine Workers for Coal Mine Cleanup Bill 04/14/2004
Wyoming Rep. Barbara Cubin has joined forces with United Mine Workers of America on a congressional bill to clean up abandoned coal mines, the first time either can remember being on the same side.
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Wyoming: Plastic Bags to Playground Equipment in Lander 04/13/2004
Bales of recyclable plastic bags (24,000 bags/bale) will be sold to one of the manufacturers producing the plastic composite lumber for new playground equipment.
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Colorado: Unexpected Mercury Levels in Trout from Pristine Mountain Lakes 04/08/2004
Unexpectedly high levels of mercury (a toxin that accumulates in the food chain) have been documented in trout from high-altitude lakes in Rocky Mountain National Park. Coal-fired power plants are the largest man-made (and unregulated) source of airborne mercury, emitting about 48 tons per year in the United States.
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Utah: Army Depot Appraised for National Mercury Stockpile 03/26/2004
In a final environmental impact statement (EIS) released by EPA, the Utah Industrial Depot, formerly part of the adjacent Tooele Army Depot, is among the five finalists being considered for storing 4,890 tons of mercury that is now in warehouses at three Department of Energy sites. The EIS can be viewed at .
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