JOHNSTON CITY, Ill. (AP) — Some residents and environmental groups are fighting a coal company’s plan to discharge waste water from a southern Illinois mine into the Big Muddy River.
The application from St. Louis-based Foresight Energy seeks permission from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to discharge up to 3.5 million gallons of water a day into the river from its Pond Creek Mine near Johnston City in Williamson County.
The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports the company says it needs to pump out groundwater seeping into the mine that poses a danger to workers. The water has elevated levels of chlorides and sulfates that could be toxic to aquatic life.
Joyce Blumenshine of the Illinois Sierra Club says the request is beyond typical discharges into the river about 100 miles southeast of St. Louis.