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Coal Tar Sites

Two large Ithaca sites are being remediated.

The Coal Tar in Ithaca is a remnant from the days when heat and light were provided by burning "manufactured gas" which was produced at two sites - one on Court Street (on the block where the Markles Flats building still stands) and one by the Ithaca Area Wastewater Treatment Facility (IAWWTF) , down behind the Aldi store, between the Farmers' Market and Cascadilla Creek. Coal was processed to produce a gas which was distributed through pipes to local homes. The Coal Tar is a waste product from that processing, which contains both BTEX compounds (Benzene, Toluene, Ethyl-benzene and Xylene) and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs).

The Records of Decision for the two sites are here: First Street (IAWWTF), Court Street.

NYSDEC maintains a web page describing the history of Manufactured Gas Plants in New York, their program for cleaning them up, and the status of various site efforts.

New York State Electric & Gas (NYSEG) is the successor operation to the original gas manufacturers and is the "Responsible Party" charged with implementing the clean-up of the two Ithaca sites, as well as others in the state. NYSEG maintains a web page discussing these sites in general.      

NYSEG also has pages on each of the Ithaca sites: First Street (IAWWTF), Court Street. The link to the NYSEG page for First Street is currently pointing to a missing page. This Feasibility Study document summarizes the concerns and suggested/accepted remedial steps for the IAWWTF site.

Ithaca Area Wastewater Treatment Facility Aerial

The First Street site.

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