A coal-fired power plant in southern Illinois. A new state bill would clean up coal ash from power plants like this one. Summers in the Midwest are great for outdoor activities like growing your garden or cooling off in one of the area’s many lakes and streams. But some waters aren’t as clean as they should be. That’s in part because coal companies have long buried toxic waste known as coal ash near many of the Midwest’s iconic waterways, including Lake Michigan . Though coal ash dumps can leak harmful chemicals like arsenic and cadmium into nearby waters, regulators have done little to address these toxic sites. As a result, the Midwest is now littered with coal ash dumps, with Illinois containing the most leaking sites in the country . Thankfully, Illinois policymakers have just passed a coal ash bill that will finally help address the coal ash problem. If signed into law, the new protections signal hope for those who have been impacted by toxic coal ash for far too long. The landmark legislation comes after years of advocacy by community groups such as Eco-Justice Collaborative and the Central Illinois Healthy Communities Alliance , as well as legal […]

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