Mercury, the Community, and Me LogoThe “Mercury, the Community, and Me” Project is a compilation of educational activities about mercury and the nearby Black Butte Mine Site that begins with a solid foundation of environmental health science. While educating students in interdisciplinary science, they are exposed to careers, problem solving, decision-making, teamwork and social responsibility.

Go to the Teacher Resource Page for the Educational Packet developed through this project. Please note the project ended in 2014, and has not been updated since then.

This project was developed for London School as part of the EPA Partners in Technical Assistance Program (PTAP). Learn more 

Project Videos

Careers in Environmental Health


The video “Careers in Environmental Health” was created to introduce students to various careers in science. Environmental Health includes chemists, biologists, toxicologists, epidemiologists, and many more careers. Scientists from Oregon State University and the Environmental Protection Agency were interviewed about their job, as well as how they ended up becoming a scientist. The video is 13 minutes long. Go directly to YouTube.

Teacher Guide | Student Worksheet. There are shorter versions of the video for the younger students - Elementary

The Black Butte Mine

The Black Butte Mine Superfund Site is located near Cottage Grove, Oregon in Lane County. Mercury and other contamination from tailing piles at the abandoned mine site affect the Coast Fork Willamette River and creeks that flow into Cottage Grove Reservoir.

This video was created for students to learn about the history of their community.  Many people have no knowledge of the Black Butte Mine or the role it played in local and national history. The history of the Black Butte Mine is fascinating and important for the current environmental health of the surrounding community.  The video is about 9:45 minutes long and includes interviews with local people sharing their first-hand experience at a Cottage Grove Historical Society event. Go directly to YouTube.

Teacher Guide | Worksheet | Map of Black Butte Mine Watershed

Other Videos

Mercury and Your Health

This informal, easy-to-follow animation from the National Library of Medicine introduces middle school students to elemental mercury. The animation discusses where mercury can be found within the earth’s crust, its many uses, and potential human health risks associated with exposure. For more information, visit the Environmental Health Student Portal. See it on YouTube

Mercury: From Source to Seafood

A ten minute web-based film explaining how mercury gets into the seafood we eat, why it is important to eat low-mercury fish for good health, and the need to keep mercury out of the environment from the Dartmouth Toxic Metals Superfund Research Program