Report: Marion Power Plant Worst in Illinois for Groundwater Contamination from Coal-Ash Dumps

Report: Marion Power Plant Worst in Illinois for Groundwater Contamination from Coal-Ash Dumps

(WRXX) – A recent report shows the worst of 16 power plant locations in Illinois for groundwater contamination from coal-ash dumps is located in southern Illinois.

The Southern Illinois Power Cooperative Marion Power Plant in Marion, where groundwater monitors found cobalt in the groundwater at 63 times safe levels, thallium at 46 times safe levels and arsenic at five times safe levels.

Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) and Earthjustice, two environmental nonprofits, released, “Poisonous Coverup: The Widespread Failure of the Power Industry to Clean Up Coal Ash Dumps,” which evaluated sites across the country.

Springfield’s Dallman power plant is responsible for arsenic in the groundwater at 14 times safe levels and boron at 10 times safe levels.

The worst site for boron contamination in Illinois is Kincaid Power Plant in Christian County, which had two times the safe level of boron, the report concluded.

Arsenic is a naturally occurring substance that can be found in air, water, and soil, and is known to cause cancer.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, boron is a pollutant found in the ash and exposure to large amounts of it over short periods of time can affect the stomach, intestines, liver, kidney and brain.