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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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An overhead view of Watco Transloading's storage terminal on Chicago's Southeast Side. Watco is one of at least two facilities in the area that handle manganese. (Google)

An ordinance to protect residents from a potentially brain-damaging pollutant is passed by the City Council. But does it go far enough?

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(Google Maps)

A brain-damaging pollutant found at high levels near thousands of Southeast Side homes would be banned at future industrial sites under a new ordinance introduced by city officials Wednesday.

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S.H. Bell's bulk storage facility along the Calumet River on Chicago’s Southeast Side. (Alex Ruppenthal / Chicago Tonight)

Chicago public health officials have signed off on a Southeast Side company’s updated plan to cut emissions of brain-damaging manganese dust that regulators say pose a health risk to nearby residents.

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

A Southeast Side company must install air monitors to detect levels of dust emissions from heavy metals processed on-site, according to a letter issued by the city this week.

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Children on Chicago’s Southeast Side have higher levels of manganese in their toenails than children in other parts of the city, according to preliminary results of a study aiming to measure the impact of toxic metals on children’s health. 

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(Courtesy Little Village Environmental Justice Organization)

Organizers from several Chicago environmental groups are demanding more action from the city to combat air pollution in industrialized neighborhoods as Mayor Rahm Emanuel prepares to host a high-profile summit on climate change.

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

Environmental advocates say a Southeast Side storage company violated city standards for air pollution earlier this year. But the company disagrees, asserting that the state’s more lenient law applies. 

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

A Southeast Side company tipped off regulators to its own violation of city air pollution standards, documents submitted to the city show. 

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(Google Maps)

Chicago public health officials have given the Southeast Side company an additional week to come up with an improved plan for reducing emissions of manganese dust.

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A Chicago company has until Sept. 6 to submit a plan for reducing brain-damaging manganese dust that has been found nearby in a primarily low-income, minority neighborhood on the Southeast Side.

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The bulk storage operator on Chicago’s Southeast Side has exceeded a federal threshold for emissions of toxic manganese dust, according to new air monitoring data published by the EPA.

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