Selenium, and Gunderson, put county's waterways at risk

| October 2, 2020 7:00 AM

To the editor:

Kudos to Troy’s Shawna Kelsey for revealing “Selenium” Steve Gunderson’s attempt to sabotage and undermine the Montana Department of Environmental Quality’s recommendation to limit Teck’s Canadian coal mines from spewing even more toxic selenium into Lake Koocanusa and the Kootenai River from their Elk River facilities.

Even more shocking, state Rep. Gunderson (R-Libby) is completely at odds with the efforts of his fellow Republican and more experienced colleague, state Sen. Mike Cuffe (R-Eureka), who has worked effortlessly and diligently on behalf of Lincoln County to protect not only the amount of water released by Canada into Lake Koocanusa, but to address the degradation of the water itself.

For the health and safety of our family, as well as countless others who have enjoyed the magnificent fishery of Lake Koocanusa for many years, we currently limit the salmon caught from Lake Koocanusa to one serving per week, given the existing selenium content. Should Gunderson have his way, the toxicity of that fishery will potentially eliminate edible salmon consumption within a decade.

Tony Smith