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Council celebrates 10 years free of coal tar

Monday, February 1, 2016 by Nora Ankrum

This month marks the 10-year anniversary of Austin’s ban on the sale and use of pavement sealants that contain toxic coal tar. Austin was the first jurisdiction in the U.S. to institute such as ban, but other cities and states have followed. Coal tar has chemicals in it that are harmful to humans and aquatic life. Since the ban, tests showing a decline in polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in Lady Bird Lake suggest that the move is paying off. Calling the ban “one of those David and Goliath moments,” Mayor Steve Adler commemorated the anniversary on Thursday by proclaiming the day to be “Coal Tar Sealer Ban 10th Anniversary Day.”

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