Brett French reports: Yellowstone River concerns rise in wake of spill
By angelamontana

Posted: February 23, 2024

Conservation groups and fishing outfitters have voiced their concerns in recent correspondence with the groups overseeing the cleanup of the Yellowstone River following last year’s railroad bridge collapse and derailment. The derailment resulted in the spill of an estimated 420,000 pounds of asphalt and three train cars filled with molten sulfur. The cause of the derailment and bridge failure have not yet been released by federal investigators. On Feb. 29, the group in charge of cleaning up the spill will hold a meeting in Columbus, which can also be accessed online. During the meeting plans for additional cleanup work this spring and summer will be outlined. Since the spill occurred during spring runoff, asphalt has been found as far as 130 miles downstream. Results from Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks regarding testing of fish above and below the spill have not been released. Conservationists and fishing outfitters are concerned about the long-term impacts of this spill, which comes on top of two earlier oil spills in the Yellowstone River as well as the 2022 historic floods. To learn more about the issues, check out my story at:

Written by Brett French | Outdoors Editor | Billings Gazette

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