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Halt the salt!

January 5, 2017 03:16 PM
A handful of salt is all you need to melt ice and prevent pollution
A handful of salt is all you need
© City of Brooklyn Park

For those of us who live in the colder climates, winter and ice can be anything from a nuisance to a hazard. We often use salt to reduce the dangers of ice and snow on our driveways and sidewalks.

Salt damage

While it’s essential to keep safe in wintertime, it’s important to note that salt doesn’t just disappear when the snow and ice eventually melts. Instead, it can cause irreversible damage as it washes into our lakes and streams, and seeps into our groundwater supply.

How you can help

Fortunately, you can help prevent salt pollution by limiting the amount of salt you use on your driveways and sidewalks. Try to avoid using it altogether. However, if safety concerns require you to control ice, consider following these simple tips to limit salt use:

  1. Shovel. Try to keep your driveway and walkways free from snow when it first falls.
  2. Use salt sparingly. Use no more than one pound of salt for 250 square feet. One heaping coffee mug is about one pound of salt and 250 square feet is roughly the size of two parking spaces.
  3. Tell a neighbor! They may be over-salting too.


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