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Thread: Montana City Cashing in on Toxic Water Pit

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Montana City Cashing in on Toxic Water Pit

    From the AP Wire:
    http://www.newsday.com/news/nationwo...orld-headlines
    BUTTE, Mont. -- Turning lemons into tourist lemonade, the Chamber of Commerce in this mining city is charging admission to see one of America's largest bodies of toxic water. And people are paying.

    "Some people see contaminated water," said chamber executive Marko Lucich. "I see wealth."

    The chamber launched a trial run last summer, charging visitors $1 to gaze at the Berkeley Pit and its placid, gray water. There were enough people willing to pay that officials decided to charge again this year -- doubling the price to $2.
    .....
    Admission fees brought in about $18,600 between June 15 and Sept. 30 last year. Some of the proceeds will go toward improvements intended to make the site even more attractive to tourists.
    .....
    Pit owner Montana Resources, which operates Butte's only active mine, has deeded the Chamber of Commerce the observation deck and 2 1/2 nearby acres. The chamber plans $275,000 in improvements, including a pavilion, a playground, food service and flush toilets in place of outhouses.
    What an attraction ?
    If you were there on vacation would you go see it ?
    Good examaple of the Lemon/Lemonade adage/cliché.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian mgk920's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNA
    From the AP Wire:
    http://www.newsday.com/news/nationwo...orld-headlines


    What an attraction ?
    If you were there on vacation would you go see it ?
    Good examaple of the Lemon/Lemonade adage/cliché.
    What's the latest info on the expected time when that pit starts overflowing?



    Mike

  3. #3
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mgk920
    What's the latest info on the expected time when that pit starts overflowing?



    Mike
    There isn't any danger of the toxic water overtopping the pit. The danger is that the water will rise high enough to pollute the groundwater, if (when) that happens, the domestic wells in the valley could become irreversibly polluted.


    Awfully glad my family got to see the pit before the admission kicked in.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  4. #4
    Cyburbian
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    Okay, you guys need to see the thing before you start passing judgement. It's freakin' huge. You can see it from an airplane, easily. Its enormous. Its ugly. Its hugely controversial across the state. And, evidently, its a moneymaker.

    Plus, the city of butte is absolutely fascinating. Its such a ghost-city... turn of the century, it was hopping. Now, the whole place is crumbling. Mine shafts and tailings piles are scattered throughout, the houses are absolutely gorgeous while completely falling apart, the topography is very similar to san fran... And, to top it off, you've got this absolutely enormous open-pit mine in the center of town...i love the place.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Yeah, Butte is pretty cool, even after the brothel museum closed. The working-class neighborhoods have wonderful homes. The downtown is great, though a little empty. Good restaurants, too.

    It is definitely worth a visit. The question is do you visit for St. Patrick's Day (one hell of a party) or July 3rd for the fireworks show (miners know explosives)?
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  6. #6
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    It appears that this is the beast here:

    http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=e...2,0.052915&t=k

    Also I found this:

    http://www.pitwatch.org/

    You think it'd be an advocacy group but it appears to be greenwashing.

    Hilariously, they seem to think that groundwater contamination is a feature:

    The Berkeley Pit will not overflow
    [...]
    Third, if for some unforeseen reason the water level in the Berkeley Pit were allowed to rise unchecked, the water would still never overtop the rim of the Pit. At some point, groundwater flow would eventually reverse direction. Instead of flowing toward the Pit, as it does now, the water would begin to flow away from the Pit, into the void spaces between the sand grains in the alluvial aquifer. This underground water movement would prevent the Pit surface water from ever approaching the rim.
    Reality does not conform to your ideology.
    http://neighborhoods.chicago.il.us Photographs of Life in the Neighborhoods of Chicago
    http://hafd.org/~jordanb/ Pretentious Weblog.

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