Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

THE WATERSHED CENTER CONGRATULATES ELK RAPIDS FOR PROTECTING CLEAN WATER

VILLAGE PASSED FIRST PAVEMENT SEALANT ORDINANCE IN GRAND TRAVERSE BAY WATERSHED

 

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – June 8, 2018 – The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay congratulates the Village of Elk Rapids for passing the first pavement sealant ordinance in the Grand Traverse Bay watershed and northern Michigan, with strict regulations that protect water quality.

“We applaud Elk Rapids for taking a strong stance to protect our natural, recreational, and economic resources,” said Christine Crissman, executive director of The Watershed Center. “It is clear they value clean water, as this ordinance follows on the heels of the green infrastructure ordinance they passed last year. Their leadership is an asset to our region.”

The ordinance states that scientific studies show asphalt driveway sealers are cause for certain health and environmental concerns. Under this ordinance, the use and sale of pavement sealant products containing greater than 0.1% Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) by weight, including coal tar-based sealers, are prohibited to protect water quality and the health of residents, fish, and other aquatic life. Elk Rapids joins other Michigan communities, including Ann Arbor, which banned the sealant in 2016.

PAHs can contaminate our waterways when rain falls and washes away trace amounts that add up in our creeks, streams, and lakes. PAH particles can also become airborne and travel as dust. Sealants for driveways, parking lots, and playgrounds that do not include PAHs exist in the marketplace and are encouraged as an alternative.

The ordinance will go into effect later this summer.

 

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The Watershed Center is a non-profit organization that advocates for clean water in Grand Traverse Bay and acts to protect and preserve its 1,000-square mile watershed, which covers portions of Grand Traverse, Leelanau, Antrim, and Kalkaska counties. Learn more at www.gtbay.org.

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