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EPA: Company must halt poison gas at SE Idaho site

The Environmental Protection Agency ordered a chemical company to take steps to halt poisonous, explosive gas that’s leaking from a Superfund site in southeastern Idaho after the state determined it’s an “urgent public health hazard.”

Philadelphia-based FMC Corp. operated a plant until 2001 on the Eastern Michaud Flats area west of Pocatello on the Shoshone-Bannock Indian Reservation.

The site, about a mile from Pocatello Airport’s passenger terminal, has been on a federal list of America’s most-contaminated places since 1990.

A decade after the FMC plant was shuttered, however, a capped pond is now leaking phosphine gas, a severe respiratory irritant that smells like rotten fish.

This month, Idaho concluded burping phosphine gas from FMC’s Pond 15S “is an urgent public health hazard for anyone on site.”


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