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  Air Pollution and smoke regulation
Brief Description:  Although not a new issue, air pollution in St. Louis was becoming much worse in the 1920s. By 1926, trees in Forest Park were dying from the "sulphuric gases," and the botanical gardens was comptemplating a move to the county to get away from the smoke. As early as 1822, St. Louis was known as the dirtiest place in the Mississippi Valley, with a reputation as aplace where candles occasionally had to be used at midday. With the growth of the city, pollution became much worse. In 1923, the Chamber of Commerce┬┤s Committee on Smoke Abatement tried to convince residents to use proper stoking and other techniques to cut down smoke emissions. An ordinance in 1924 created a smoke regulation commission empowered to inspect and license new furnaces. Smoke emission was outlawed, except during a daily start-up period of twenty minutes, but there was no provision for prosecution. It took several years to achieve better quality air for St. Louis residents, but by the winter of 1940-41, there were only 19 hours of thick smoke and 178 hours of moderate smoke, as compared to 177 hours of thick smoke and 599 hours of moderate smoke during the previous winter.
Year:  1923
Decade:  1920 - 1929
Beginning Date:    1923



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