If all goes according to plan, the city of Chicago is about to become a major center for energy production. As part of that plan, thousands of well-paying jobs will be created, a generation’s worth of clean and affordable energy will be made available to the Great Lakes region, and more than one hundred acres of land that is currently contaminated will be remediated, helping to spur an industrial renaissance in what is now a wasteland within Chicago’s southeast side.
We are talking of course, about Chicago Clean Energy, LLC and their ongoing campaign to build an ultra-clean $3 billion coal and petcoke gasification facility on what was once the site of the LTV coke facility, which ran along the Calumet River from about 111th Street to 114th Street. For the past eight years the developers, which now include investor Leucadia National Corporation, have been trying to create the framework and cooperation necessary to build the facility. During that time, the project moved slowly but steadily through a process of legislative and regulatory review. In July of 2011, with broad-based support from the Illinois General Assembly, Governor Pat Quinn finally signed into law Public Act 97-096 which created the legal framework for moving the project forward toward finally breaking ground and delivering more than a few hard-sought jobs to an area hit hard by today’s economy.1 2 3 4 5 6 next >>