Posts Tagged ‘Coal’

18 coal permits lapsed at Ohio EPA

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Eighteen coal facilities in Ohio are operating with expired pollution-discharge permits under an agency where allegations of coal-industry influence arose during a personnel flap last year, an Associated Press review has found.

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency records show 13 of the 18 have expired since Republican Gov. John Kasich took office in 2011, or about a quarter of the 49 issued to coal facilities.

The agreements spell out what pollutants each mining operation, coal preparation plant, storm water facility or coal waste storage area can release under state and federal clean water laws. The AP obtained data on the permits through a public records request.

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West Virginia Chemical Spill Exposes a New Risk to Water From Coal

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

WASHINGTON — The chemical spill that contaminated water for hundreds of thousands of West Virginians was just the latest and most high-profile case of coal sullying the nation’s waters.

For decades, chemicals and waste from the coal industry have tainted hundreds of waterways and groundwater supplies, spoiling private wells, shutting down fishing and rendering streams virtually lifeless, according to an Associated Press analysis of federal environmental data. But because these contaminants are released gradually and in some cases not tracked or regulated, they attract much less attention than a massive spill like the one in West Virginia.

“I’ve made a career of body counts of dead fish and wildlife made that way from coal,” said Dennis Lemly, a U.S. Forest Service research biologist who has spent decades chronicling the deformities pollution from coal mining has caused in fish. “How many years and how many cases does it take before somebody will step up to the plate and say, `Wait a minute, we need to change this’?”

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Chicago Coal Plants to Close in 2012

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

FiskCoalPlantRallyCROPEnvironmental and public health advocates celebrated the May 2nd announcement that two Chicago coal plants will shut down in September.

Midwest Generation’s Fisk and Crawford plants will close years ahead of the state’s deadline to “clean up or shut down.” The Pilsen and Little Village neighborhoods where the power plants are located applauded this victory. According to a Harvard School of Public Health study, the Fisk and Crawford coal plants have caused high rates of asthma and other respiratory health problems in their communities. Data from the U.S. EPA show that the Fisk and Crawford plants are the city’s two largest sources of climate change pollution by a wide margin.

Chicago Tribune: State Line Coal Plant to Retire in 2012

Friday, November 18th, 2011

The Chicago Tribune reports that one of the nation’s dirtiest coal plants will shut down in March 2012, rather than in 2014 as expected. The State Line coal plant sits on the shore of Lake Michigan in Hammond, IN, just across the border from Chicago. ELPC’s 2010 report on State Line found that soot and smog pollution from the plant cost the public over $77 million per year in health and related damages.

“Now that they’re on the path to shutting down, the question is how soon the site will be ready for redevelopment,” said ELPC Executive Director Howard Learner told the Tribune. “We have an opportunity to replace a dirty clunker with an extension of open space along Lake Michigan.”

Read the Chicago Tribune article here

Poll Shows Chicagoans Want City to Reduce Pollution from Fisk and Crawford Coal Plants

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

New poll results show that in voters in every part of Chicago support efforts by the City to reduce pollution from the Fisk and Crawford coal plants. 72% of Chicago voters said they would support a plan that reduces soot pollution from the coal plants by 90% and carbon dioxide pollution by 50%.  Even after hearing arguments in opposition to, and in favor of stricter pollution standards, 64% of respondents said they would support City efforts to reduce pollution from Fisk and Crawford.

“This poll shows that people all across our city want cleaner air,” said Kim Wasserman, Director of the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization. “Northsiders and southsiders, men and women, Latino, black and white voters all want the City to clean up or shut down the Fisk and Crawford coal plants.”

The poll found that voters in every part of the City want to reduce coal plant pollution, but support was particularly strong in Latino neighborhoods and the South Side. The Fisk coal plant is located in Pilsen and the Crawford coal plant is located in Little Village. Both plants are owned by Midwest Generation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Edison International.

“Pollution from Fisk and Crawford affects everyone in Chicago,” said Maria Torres, an Organizer with Pilsen Alliance. “People in Pilsen and Little Village have been fighting coal plant pollution for years, but it’s clear the rest of the city understands that their health is at risk too.”

In separate question, 56% of those surveyed said that protecting the environment is good for the economy.  “Chicagoans understand that we don’t need to choose between clean air and economic growth,” said Howard Learner, Executive Director of the Environmental Law & Policy Center. “Reducing pollution will protect public health and make Chicago’s economy stronger.”

Researchers from the Clean Air Task Force found that pollution from Fisk and Crawford causes 42 premature deaths, 66 heart attacks and 720 asthma attacks each year. The National Research Council found that pollution from Fisk and Crawford costs the public over $120 million each year in health and related damages. One in four Chicagoans live within a three-mile radius of the smokestacks.

The poll was commissioned by ELPC and our allies in the Chicago Clean Power Coalition.

Read more in Crain’s Chicago Business

View detailed results of the poll here