Legislators wanting more attention paid to the state’s coal industry claim their proposals won’t harm the environment. State Rep. John Bradley (D-Marion) is leading a group of lawmakers seeking to incentivize the use of Illinois coal within the state, rather than using out-of-state coal in Illinois electricity generators.
Bradley argues that will reduce the state’s carbon footprint.
“Both in terms of burning with less carbon emissions, but also in the quantity of coal that has to be burned,” Bradley said. “40 million tons of out-of-state coal currently being burned in Illinois per year. We could reduce that to 30 million.”
Bradley says the first step is changing the state’s fuel adjustment charge, which he says encourages the use of out-of-state coal, customers could save money. He says some of the funds could be funneled to existing coal plants to pay for installation of air pollution control devices.
Local lawmakers, Senators Andy Manar (D) of Bunker Hill and Sam McCann (R) of Carlinville, and Representative CD Davidsmeyer (R) of Jacksonville support the effort.