Mont. tribes fight to clean up old gold mines
Tuesday, November 18, 2003

The tribes on the Fort Belknap Reservation in Montana are dealing with the effects of gold mining on their lands.

More than 100 years ago, the Little Rocky Mountains, a sacred area, were taken from the Assiniboine and Gros Ventre tribes to allow mining. "Indians know white people are crazy for gold," tribal member Gus Helgeson told The Environmental Magazine.

Tribal members say the mines have caused health problems. Cyanide and acid-water runoff have polluted the waters. And now there is no one left to clean up the mess because the company operating the Zortman-Landusky mine has gone bankrupt.

The tribes are pressing the state and the federal government to ensure there is enough money to clean up the area.

Get the Story:
Gold mining leaves a toxic trail (The Environmental Magazine 11/18)

Relevant BLM Documents:
Record of Decision | Final Environmental Impact Statement

Relevant Links:
Fort Belknap Community Council -

Related Stories:
Mont. tribes sue over cleanup of mines near reservation (10/29)
Mont. mine cleanup bill killed for losing teeth (03/28)
Mont. mine cleanup bill clears one hurdle (3/27)
Mont. tribal members want mines cleaned up (03/19)
Mont. tribes offer mine tours (05/30)
Tribes plan to challenge mine plan (5/6)
Mont. tribes want mine cleanup (5/3)
Cleanup of mine near reservation costly (1/9)
Fort Belknap tribes push mine cleanup (10/1)
Mont. tribes lose mining auction (9/5)

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