Ash Grove Cement seeks shale exploration project

The exploration license would allow Ash Grove to extract 10,000 tons of shale for testing and construct a haul road to the test area. Photo by Andrew Buchanan on Unsplash.

Through Jan. 3, the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will take public comment on a draft environmental assessment for a shale-clay exploration project proposed by Ash Grove Cement Co. near Montana City.

According to The Monitor, the state DEQ received an amendment to Ash Grove’s Exploration License to extract a 10,000-ton bulk sample of shale for chemical testing. The site is above Ash Grove’s existing Clark Gulch Quarry just west of Montana City.

In addition, Ash Grove would construct a one-mile haul road to access the test pit area and would complete four drill holes in the area.

View the draft EA online at