Daily Archives: June 28, 2021

Love That Dirty Water

The Ol’ Toxic Swimmin’ Hole, Pike Copper Mine

A little good environmental news, courtesy of the Valley News by way of VTDigger: The long, expensive, difficult cleanup of the Elizabeth Mine Superfund site may be finished by the end of this year.

Huzzahs all around. Great news for our environment and for the town of Strafford, which has borne the brunt of the cleanup effort.

But the story also mentions two other Superfund sites in eastern Vermont: the Pike Hill Copper Mine in Corinth and the Ely Copper Mine in Vershire. Which made me wonder, how many Superfund sites does Vermont have, anyway?

The answer, according to the EPA’s website, is 14. (Not counting the Saint-Gobain site that’s wreaked havoc with Bennington-area water supplies. The actual site is in New York.)

Next question: How does our total compare with other states?

The answer: in absolute numbers, pretty good. On a per capita basis, not so much.

I ran the numbers for other New England states and threw in my home state of Michigan, a former industrial powerhouse that might be expected to have a lot of Superfund sites. Sad to say, Vermont’s the worst of the lot.

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