2 thoughts on “A new coal mine in town: environmental, economic questions still linger

  1. Comments that coal mining is the most regulated industry and improved over prior times are misleading. All stakeholders need to visit current coal mining areas in Illinois and examine the reality of what happens in a community. The regulatory agencies do not protect water resources, quality of air, safety of residents, and land resources. Deer Run Mine in Hillsboro has a life time air permit that does not require air monitoring and has no air monitors on or off the mine site. Coal dust has permeated the hospital next door and the homes of residents. Coal dust was a non-issue in the permitting process probably due to the fact that the federal mining law, Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, does not have the authority to enforce the Clean Air Act in coalfield communities. The NPDES permits authorized by IEPA for mine water discharges result in surface waters that are contaminated as shown by high conductivity in waters surrounding Deer Run Mine. Water resources will be lost due to the non-recognition by the mine and regulatory agencies. If water resources aren’t listed in the permit, they don’t qualify for reclamation. As established in litigation in Pennsylvania, streams and springs cannot be recreated. The high hazard coal slurry impoundments will be permanently located in the community and the location will NOT be determined by the lowest risk to the community. The quality and quantity of farmland will be compromised and lost. Property values will diminished and property taxes will rise. Check out Saline County tax situation. Don’t make your community vulnerable to coal mining.

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