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Law Pacific Environmental Advocacy Center (PEAC)

PEAC Files Clean Water Act Suit in Illinois

July 26, 2012

  • “They took a beautiful river and buried it in concrete.”

On behalf of the Quad Cities Waterkeeper, PEAC filed a complaint on July 19th in the Central District of Illinois alleging long-term and serious Clean Water Act violations.  The violations stem from years of concrete dumping and unauthorized sand dredging in the Green River in Henry County, Illinois.  The Green River provides valuable habitat for a diversity of fish, wildlife and migratory birds and is an important tributary to the Rock River.  In addition to harming wildlife habitat and ruining the aesthetic beauty of the river banks, many of the concrete chunks contain protruding metal rebar, which present serious safety risks to boaters on the river.

“They took a beautiful river and buried it in concrete,”  says Waterkeeper Art Norris, who leads Quad Cities Waterkeeper’s efforts in the Upper Mississippi River Basin.  “It’s a sad day when we cannot count on the Army Corps or Illinois EPA to protect the public’s rivers from the type of damage we see in this case, but if they won’t enforce our river protection then we will.”

Prairie Rivers Network, an environmental advocacy organization based in Illinois, has also filed a notice of intent to sue under the Clean Water Act and intends to join the existing lawsuit.

PEAC is working on the case with Oregon-based environmental lawyers, Scott Jerger and Brent Foster, as well as Chicago-based environmental lawyer Albert Ettinger.


Read the complaint and a press release from Quad Cities Waterkeeper, or watch a video of concrete dumping on Green River.

Press coverage:

Quad Cities Suing Over Riverbank Materials

Lawsuit Accuses Geneseo Company of Polluting Green River