The Jamaica High School gymnasium was packed with people interested in commenting on and asking questions about the permit application for the proposed Bulldog Mine.
The public spoke for about two and a half hours. Supporters of the proposed mine mostly made lofty comments about the employment opportunities and potential economic benefits of the mine. Many mine employees read prepared statements by Illinois elected officials in support of the project.
Opponents of the mine, many of them members of Stand Up To CoalÂ and Prairie Rivers Network, mostly highlighted deficiencies in the permit application. Some important omissions were mentioned, including insufficient attention to the biological diversity of the Salt Fork watershed; lack of attention to obtaining water from Homer and Georgetown; and questions about the mine’s legal ability to use local farm drainage infrastructure to carry its water discharge.
It’s important to note that additional comments may be submitted to IDNR for the public record until December 29, 2014. More details can be found on our website.