Illinois EPA Extends Operations For Southeast Side Waste Dump

by The Chicago Times Staff

December 11, 2021

CHICAGO — Illinois Environmental Protection Agency gave the go-ahead Friday to extend the operations of a Southeast Side waste dump for another year.

The one-year permit allows the US Army Corps of Engineers to operate its Confined Disposal Facility until November 30, 2022.  It was intended to be a location for river sediment removed from a Chicago industrial area so that commercial boats could navigate the Calumet River and Calumet Harbor into and out of Lake Michigan.

Since the disposal facility’s construction in 1984, several harmful metals and chemicals, including lead, mercury, arsenic, cyanide, cadmium, and polychlorinated biphenyls, have been extracted from the dredged waters.

Environmental groups expressed disappointment in the decision in a news release issued Friday evening, despite the fact that they were not surprised by the Illinois EPA’s decision to grant the year-long permit.