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Dem state lawmakers ask EPA to not allow S.S. Badger to run

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The S.S. Badger is the last coal fired ship in regular service in the U.S.  During the summer months it ferries cars between Ludington and Manitowoc Wisconsin.
The S.S. Badger is the last coal fired ship in regular service in the U.S. During the summer months it ferries cars between Ludington and Manitowoc Wisconsin.

MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - Two Democratic state lawmakers have asked the federal EPA not to let the S.S. Badger car ferry keep dumping coal ash into Lake Michigan after its permit expires in December.

The ferry which runs from Manitowoc to Ludington Michigan has been looking for a cleaner way to handle its emissions – and until then, it’s seeking an extension of its dumping permit beyond December 19th.

But Milwaukee Assembly Democrat Jon Richards and South Milwaukee Senator Chris Larson says it’s “unacceptable” to let the Badger continue what they call polluting Lake Michigan. And they said all ferries should play by the same rules.

The Badger is in direct competition with the Lake Express car ferry, which crosses Lake Michigan between Milwaukee and Muskegon.

This week, Lake Express owner Sheldon Lubar criticized Governor Scott Walker for asking the EPA for an extension. The governor’s office said it wanted the Badger to keep operating in a manner that safeguards Lake Michigan.

Terri Brown of the company which owns the S.S. Badger said her group was disappointed that, “Mr. Lubar used his considerable wealth and power to criticize Governor Walker for trying to help save the Badger.” An EPA ruling is expected this fall. 

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