Take a Good Look at the Bad Old Days, and How Science Saved the Future

bttf-30thThe 30th Anniversary Celebration of the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) gathered together many of the original leaders of the effort to get a handle on hazardous pollution in the environment.


It was a valuable window into the spirit of the times before 1985 that convinced Illinois lawmakers to create a center for research, industry assistance and public information. Thousands had been killed in Bhopal, Love Canal had blighted whole neighborhoods, the Cuyahoga River had burned, and in Illinois, contamination at Waukegan Harbor and Lake Calumet had brought home to citizens the need for scientific evidence about the threats.


ISTC took the opportunity to tell this story at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on Nov. 9. It was a proud moment for the original players who participated in the event, and for ISTC’s parent Prairie Research Institute, and all of their current researchers who continue to drive sustainable economic development in Illinois. Videos on the presentations will be made available soon at http://www.istc.illinois.edu/news/30anniversaryhome.cfm.