Why Transition from Coal?
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 to one based on clean, safe, renewable energy.
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.
Be Transformed ... 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.