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Springfield Environmental Services recently signed four organizations to its Clean Pavement Initiative, a program aimed at voluntarily reducing the use of coal tar-based sealants on parking lots and driveways in the Springfield community.
CoxHealth, Mercy, Missouri State University and Springfield Striping and Sealing are the first to officially commit to the program.
Sealant used to coat asphalt pavement in parking lots and driveways comes in two common varieties: coal tar-based and asphalt-based. Asphalt-based sealants typically contain much lower concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) than coal tar-based sealants. PAHs can impact aquatic life in area streams. Several Springfield streams are listed by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources as “impaired” due to high levels of PAHs in the stream sediment. These stream impairments represent some of the more significant potential unfunded environmental mandates facing the community. If new regulations persist, the City could be required to provide additional funding to address these impairments.
“CoxHealth is proud to be in the forefront of this environmental issue,” says Rod Schaffer, Vice President of Facilities Management for CoxHealth. “We reached out to Springfield Striping & Sealing and worked together with manufacturers in Kansas City to figure out the right alternative formula for our parking lots. CoxHealth has been using this asphalt-based product for six years with good results.”
The goal of the Clean Pavement Initiative is to encourage pavement sealant choices that are protective of water quality. The initiative is a cooperative effort of the City and participating sealant industry professionals to educate customers on the pros and cons of coal tar and asphalt-based sealants to allow them to make an informed choice.
“Water quality should be a concern for everyone,” says Joe Manzardo with Springfield Striping and Sealing. “I’m glad we have an opportunity to offer an asphalt-based option to our customers.”
Through the program, businesses who choose to use asphalt-based sealant in their parking lots can educate their customers about the water quality benefits of this choice through parking lot signage supplied by the City. Signage will also provide positive recognition for the business and the sealant industry professional.
Citizens who choose to use asphalt-based sealant when sealing their driveways can showcase the water quality benefits of their choice with a City-supplied Clean Pavement Initiative yard plaque supplied by the City.
“At Mercy, we want to keep our patients healthy,” says Jon Swope, president of Mercy Springfield Communities. “That means caring for them outside our hospital and clinic walls as well as inside. Whenever we can positively impact the environment, we have embraced the opportunity. The Clean Pavement Initiative is an excellent example.”
"Missouri State University is proud to be partnering with the City on this important initiative,” says Suzanne Shaw, Vice President of Marketing and Communication at Missouri State University. “Our campus has been a strong and active proponent of reducing our impact on the environment.”
For more information on the Clean Pavement Initiative, visit springfieldmo.gov/cleanpavement, where those interested in participating can fill out an online commitment form.
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For more information, contact Communication Coordinator Kristen Milam at 573-819-3713 or firstname.lastname@example.org.