(415 ILCS 5/9.11)
Great Lakes Areas of Concern; mercury.
(a) The General Assembly finds that:
(1) The government of the United States of America
and the government of Canada have entered into agreements on Great Lakes water quality by signature of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement of 1978, which was amended by Protocol signed on November 18, 1987.
(2) The government of the United States of America
and the government of Canada, in cooperation with the state and provincial governments, were required to designate geographic areas, called Areas of Concern, that fail to meet the general or specific objectives of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, and where such failure has caused or is likely to cause impairment of beneficial use or failure of the ability of the area to support aquatic life.
(3) The government of the United States of America
and the government of Canada have identified 43 Areas of Concern, 26 of which are in waters of the United States of America and 17 of which are in the waters of Canada.
(4) Waukegan Harbor in Illinois was designated an
Area of Concern in 1981 by the International Joint Commission, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency as a result of the discovery of 5 beneficial use impairments, as defined in Annex 2 of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. Beneficial use impairments at the Waukegan Harbor Area of Concern were identified as the restrictions on fish consumption, degradation of benthos, restrictions on dredging activities, degradation of phytoplankton and zooplankton populations, and loss of fish and wildlife habitat.
(5) The government of the United States of America
and the government of Canada cooperate with the state and provincial governments to ensure that remedial action plans are developed to restore all impaired uses to the Areas of Concern.
(6) Mercury has been identified as a persistent
bioaccumulative contaminant of concern throughout the Great Lakes, including Lake Michigan, resulting in health advisories and restrictions on fish consumption.
(7) The thermal treatment of sludge creates mercury
(b) The Agency shall not issue any permit to develop, construct, or operate,
within one mile of any portion of Lake Michigan that has been designated an
Area of Concern under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement as of the
effective date of this Section, any site or facility for the thermal treatment
of sludge, unless the applicant submits to the Agency proof that the site or
facility has received local siting approval from the governing body of the
municipality in which the site or facility is proposed to be located (or from
the county board if located in an unincorporated area), in accordance with
Section 39.2 of this Act. For the purposes of this Section, "thermal
treatment" includes, without limitation, drying, incinerating, and any other
processing that subjects the sludge to an elevated temperature.
(Source: P.A. 93-202, eff. 7-14-03.)