Coal Ash – In Your Back Yard?

The third largest coal ash spill in U.S. history occurred early in February 2014 when a Duke Energy coal ash pit in North Carolina breached and released up to 27 million gallons of polluted water and over 82,000 tons of ash. Unfortunately, environmental catastrophes such as this are becoming more frequent, and people in Illinois are paying close attention.

Threat to Your Health
Illinois has over 100 coal ash ponds and mine-fills that leach toxic chemicals to groundwater, lakes and rivers, where pollution can spread, polluting drinking water supplies and threatening fish and wildlife. Coal ash ponds are also prone to collapse, as happened near Kingston, Tennessee in 2008 when over 1 billion gallons of coal ash slurry spilled into the Clinch and Emory Rivers.  Living near coal ash impoundments increases risk to serious medical problems, such as:

  • Birth defects
  • Neurological damage
  • Reproductive issues
  • Tumors and cancer

According to the U.S. EPA, your chance of getting cancer from water contaminated by coal ash is 1 in 50!

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Coal Ash Dump Site, Joliet Illinois – Photo by Eco-Justice Collaborative

Testify on Rules to Regulate Coal Ash Pits at Illinois Power Plants
The Illinois EPA has proposed rules to the Illinois Pollution Control Board (IPCB) to address coal ash pits at power plant sites.  The proposed rules are a good start but they need to be improved.

We need YOU to come testify and tell IPCB members how important it is to you that they adopt strong rules.

May 14, 10:00 am, James R. Thompson Center, Room  9-040
100 W Randolph St., Chicago, IL

May 15, 9:00 am, James R. Thompson Center, Room  9-040
100 W Randolph St., Chicago, IL

Let us know which hearing(s) you plan to attend.  Just fill in your information on this easy sign-up form: http://bit.ly/coalashsignup
To read more and send in comments go to: http://bit.ly/CoalAshComments

Need Help?
Do you need help drafting your testimony? You’ll find both reports, fact sheets and talking points below.

Reports:

Fact Sheets and Talking Points:

Opportunities to better protect oursevles from coal ash pollution in Illinois don’t happen often.  Please participate in the process.

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