It looks like Chicago’s South Side could be getting an environmental injection, with the potential for huge economic incentives.
A new $3 billion gasification project has been proposed for the community. The initiative is called ‘Chicago Clean Energy’.
Gasification is a process of converting organic or fossil based materials into carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide. New gasification technology uses a chemical process, without burning coal or other feedstock. This then produces substitute natural gas and captures and removes impurities. Removing elements like sulfur, argon, and mercury is essential to producing the substitute natural gas. These additional products can then be safely used in construction, agriculture and manufacturing – rather than being released.
The proposed Bill is currently in the hands of Chicago’s Governor, Pat Quinn. It now awaits his approval.
‘Chicago Clean Energy’ is forecast to create more than $10 billion in economic output for Illinois and an estimated $1.25 billion in added state and local tax revenue. The region hopes to make huge advancements in energy technology at the same time. Meanwhile, the initiative will pursue one of the most stringent air permits ever issued for an energy facility. And it will also allow the clean-up of an existing 140-acre brownfield site.
Sandra Patterson is President of the Cottage Grove Heights Community Coalition. She reportedly calls the project a “win-win” for the community. Patterson says the major investment will clean up a contaminated area, create jobs, and bring advanced energy technology right to Chicago’s backyard.
So, what would this project mean for Chicago residents? Well, organizers say it will guarantee $100 million in savings over the life of the project for ratepayers … And an innovative revenue sharing system that will provide additional cost savings to consumers.