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Illinois has the largest known coal reserves in the country, and production in the Illinois coal basin is expected to recover in 2017 despite the recent glut in natural gas. With its easy to access coal, large reserves, and high btu energy content, coal will be mined in Illinois as long as our society relies on coal as a source of energy.  But coal mining, burning, and waste disposal has impacts on mining communities and their land, water, air and overall quality of life.  Therefore, Eco-Justice Collaborative:

  • Exposes the impacts of coal mining, burning coal for electricity, while advocating for cleaner sources of energy such as wind and solar.
  • Advocates a just transition for Illinois coalfield communities, to help them transition from a coal economy.
  • Works with communities and other environmental organizations to protects our environment and residents from the hazards of coal ash disposal.

Communities Transition

A Cycle of Boom and Bust

The story of coal mining in Illinois is, as it is in most places across the country and the globe, a story of continuing booms and busts. Economies dependent on coal once thrived during booms, but today’s method of mining relies more on machines than miners, and higher production doesn’t have the economic boom it once did.



Risk Transformation - Join a Delegation!

One of the ingredients of change is to link information with moral principles.  We can all read about coal mining and its impacts on the air, land and water resources of an adjacent community.  But without seeing the destruction and meeting those impacted, we're likely just to process what we read and move on.



Coal Miner statue dreamstimr

Old King Coal – WBEZ 91.5 Chicago HEAT OF THE MOMENT

"This isn’t coal country. Not anymore. The coal still comes out of the ground, but without many workers." Coal mining is a changing industry, and more and more it's leaving its workers behind. This story illustrates that point, but also serves as a reminder that while the coal industry phases ...
IL coal subsidies

It’s Time for a Coal Tax

Today, Illinois communities are facing a critical question: Are we willing to bet our economy and its workers on an industry that won't last? ...
Peabody Energy Files for Bankruptcy

A Giant Has Fallen

Peabody is the latest in a string of major coal companies filing for bankruptcy. And, communities that have long been impacted by extraction activity are using this the opportunity to call for a just transition away from coal economies ...
Coal Mining

Coal Tax Amid Illinois Budget Crisis?

Current mine closures and layoffs are, once again, dragging Illinois communities through the "boom and bust" cycle of coal. It's time for a coal severance tax, so that corporations pay their fair share, and communities benefit by receiving funds to invest in their future ...

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