Renewed Calls For Statewide Ban of Coal Tar Sealants in Minnesota

The Rice Creek Watershed District is shown in the colored areas above.

In spite of efforts throughout the State of Minnesota, calls continue for the uniform outlaw of the use of coal tar pavement sealcoats. For example in November a watershed management of group covering 4 urban and rural counties called for “a state-wide approach” which would “provide consistency across jurisdictions in the state” and “in order to protect, restore and preserve the quality of its waters.” The Rice Creek Watershed District (RCWD) unanimously requested action to bring about a state ban. While Minnesota has the most community bans in the US, unfortunately the bans in Minnesota make up just about 17% of the State’s population.

Discussions of a state-wide ban have been started before, but have stalled primarily because of critical budget issues at the state level.

The RCWD is no stranger to the cleanup problems associated with coal tar sealant polluted pond sediment. A pond in their District, Oasis Pond, had significantly higher cleanup costs because of the contaminated soil in the bottom of the pond.

The RCWD is approximately 186 square miles of urban and rural land in Anoka, Hennepin, Ramsey and Washington Counties. Portions of the district can be found in the following municipalities: Arden Hills, Birchwood Village, Blaine, Centerville, Circle Pines, Columbia Heights, Columbus, Dellwood, Falcon Heights, Forest Lake, Fridley, Grant, Hugo, Lauderdale, Lexington, Lino Lakes, Mahtomedi, May Township, Mounds View, New Brighton, Roseville, Saint Anthony, Scandia, Shoreview, Spring Lake Park, White Bear Lake, White Bear Township and Willernie.

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