Plans for solar panel field in southern Illinois uncertain

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. -A plan to create a solar panel field in Illinois is still uncertain years after being contaminated from aluminum production.

The Environmental Protection Agency says the 400-acre (162-hectare) site was used by Alcoa until the late 1950s as a place to dispose of waste from its aluminum production plant.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that efforts to clean the EPA Superfund site ramped up in 2014 after Brightfields Development expressed interest in building a $65 million solar field there. According to Alcoa, the $19.5 million cleanup was completed in 2016.

Mike Singer is the project manager for Brightfields Development, a Massachusetts-based solar company. He says the project was four years in the works, but financing complications have prevented it from moving forward.
Information from: Belleville News-Democrat,