Ameren is removing roughly 90,000 tons of dirt that have been contaminated with coal tar since the 1800s. This undertaking is expected to take 18 months and over 4,320 semi-truck loads.
Decatur Gas Light & Coke Company built the manufactured gas plant (since removed) in 1865, which provided electricity and gas for heating and cooking. One output of this plant was the “coal tar” which can cause cancer risks if exposed to for long periods of time. As part of a long laundry list of facility makeovers, Ameren is in the process of cleaning up these facilities.
Ameren is spending $14 Million to safely and securely remove the coal tar. This is one of the 44 contaminated plants, and there are 16 plants that remain to be cleaned up. All in all, it’s safe to say that Decatur is getting a little less gassy.