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An overhead view of Watco’s storage terminal at 2926 E. 126th St. in Chicago. (Google)

U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth are among those urging the EPA to take “immediate action” against Southeast Side industrial facilities for emitting potentially harmful levels of brain-damaging manganese dust.

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An interactive map shows results from soil sampling conducted near S.H. Bell. (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

Regulators plan to clean up the soil of several residential yards with high levels of brain-damaging manganese, but they have yet to finalize a plan for addressing homes with elevated levels of lead in the soil.

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A former petcoke storage site near the Calumet River on Chicago's Southeast Side (Terry Evans / Courtesy of Museum of Contemporary Photography)

Proposed legislation would require the federal government to examine potential health risks from exposure to petroleum coke, a solid byproduct of the oil refining process that had for years been stored in uncontained piles on the Southeast Side. 

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An overhead view of Watco's storage terminal at 2926 E. 126th St. in Chicago. (Google)

Watco Transloading says it will no longer handle materials with high concentrations of manganese, a heavy metal used in steelmaking that can cause brain damage at high exposure levels. 

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(Google Maps)

Chicago facilities that process potentially harmful industrial materials must now take further steps to ensure they aren’t polluting surrounding neighborhoods.

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An overhead view of Watco's storage terminal at 2926 E. 126th St. in Chicago. (Google)

After finding high levels of brain-damaging manganese near Watco Transloading’s facility on the Southeast Side of Chicago, the EPA has accused the company of violating the Clean Air Act. 

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An overhead view of Watco's storage terminal at 2926 E. 126th St. in Chicago. (Google)

Watco Transloading faces up to $20,000 in city fines for failing to control emissions of brain-damaging manganese from its storage facility along the Calumet River. 

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An overhead view of Watco's storage terminal at 2926 E. 126th St. in Chicago. (Google)

As regulators continue to monitor manganese emissions at S.H. Bell Co., new air monitoring data shows alarming levels of the brain-damaging heavy metal near another industrial facility in the area.

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A map of the zones included in the EPA’s soil testing on the Southeast Side (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

The ongoing probe into harmful levels of brain-damaging manganese on Chicago’s Southeast Side has turned up another, more familiar neurotoxin: lead.

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(Google Maps)

Soil samples have been collected from more than 100 properties as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues to assess the threat posed by brain-damaging manganese emitted from nearby industrial sites.

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UIC bioengineering professor Ian Papautsky and Erin Haynes of the University of Cincinnati Department of Environmental Health present a sensor that will conduct rapid testing for human exposure to toxic metals. (Courtesy University of Cincinnati)

If successful, the portable, smartphone-sized sensor will measure human exposure to toxic metals like lead and manganese using a single finger prick of blood  – and deliver results in minutes.

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U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin holds a press conference Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018 in front of S.H. Bell’s industrial facility along the Calumet River on the city’s Southeast Side. (Chicago Tonight)

After touring Chicago’s industry-dominated Southeast Side on Thursday, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin pressed the Environmental Protection Agency to increase monitoring of brain-damaging manganese dust. 

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(Google Maps)

As part of its investigation into high levels of manganese on the Southeast Side, the EPA will hold an open house this week to talk about soil sampling and sign residents up for testing.

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(Alex Ruppenthal / Chicago Tonight)

About 100 Southeast Side residents attended the first public meeting addressing exposure to neurotoxic manganese since the city became aware of it in 2016. “How are you going to keep us healthy?” one resident asked.

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A week ago, test results from soil samples collected at two dozen Southeast Side homes revealed high levels of manganese. Now, the EPA will conduct further testing in the area.

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(Google Maps)

Test results from soil samples collected at 27 homes near a bulk storage facility along the Calumet River reveal high levels of manganese.

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