Quinn bans PCBs at Clinton Landfill
CHICAGO — Gov. Pat Quinn today ordered the state Environmental Protection Agency to act to keep polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) waste out of the Clinton Landfill in DeWitt County.
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The landfill is located above the Mahomet Aquifer, the deep underground water source for hundreds of thousands of central Illinoisans, including most residents of Champaign County.
Quinn said his order followed a response he received from the DeWitt County Board on Friday.
Illinois law allows the state EPA to modify a landfill permit upon the discovery that a decision was made using false or misleading information, the governor’s office said.
In Friday’s letter the DeWitt County Board stated that it “did not authorize the disposal of (federally)-regulated PCBs in its Sept. 12, 2002 siting approval.”
In both the location application to the county board and in testimony at a public hearing on the request for local approval from 2002, representatives of the Peoria Disposal Company clearly represented to the County Board that the Clinton Landfill would not accept PCBs at federally regulated concentrations, Quinn’s office said.
The IEPA will issue a modified permit for the Clinton Landfill this week, Quinn said.
“Hundreds of thousands of Illinois residents can look back on this as the day we protected their clean drinking water source,” Quinn said. “PCBs have no place in or near the drinking water of any community in our state. That is why I directed the EPA to take immediate action and protect the water supply for families throughout central Illinois.”
Some local officials said last week that Quinn didn’t need any more information from the DeWitt County Board in order to act to stop the disposal of PCB waste at the landfill, that he had plenty of documentation that the PCB approval had not been properly authorized.
But while in Champaign Friday the governor said that he wanted to act by the book.
“I think by following the proper procedure, that’s the best way to get the job done,” Quinn said.