A group of local governments including the City of Bloomington and Town of Normal has filed a complaint with the Illinois Pollution Control Board hoping to stop hazardous waste from going into the Clinton Landfill. Joe Hooker is an attorney with the City of Champaign. Hooker says DeWitt County gave only a perfunctory sign off on the change from a standard landfill to a hazardous waste facility.
"The bottom line is that they did not treat this as a new pollution control facility and they did not engage in the rather rigorous local review that is called for by the County Board."
Hooker says the Illinois EPA also broke the law by approving the permit modification. The cities and counties opposed to the landfill fear the measures to keep waste inside the facility will fail over time and regional groundwater will become polluted.
"These precautions that are being taken might very well work out just fine for five ten fifteen years or so, but it's unrealistic to expect that they would be adequate for the decades that would be called for."
Peoria Disposal owns Clinton Disposal, which owns the landfill. The company claims the efforts to contain the waste are adequate. Some hazardous waste from decommissioned gas plants is already being taken to the landfill, though the cancer causing long lasting PCBs the cities fear the most have not yet been cleared for disposal by the U-S EPA.
Support Your Public Radio Station