Did you know that one teaspoon of rock salt is enough to pollute 5 gallons of water? Once salt is introduced into our lakes and wetlands, it’s stuck there. This changes the aquatic environment and harms our water resources over time.
This winter, join us in keeping our surfaces safe but limiting excess, keeping our lakes and wetlands on a “low-salt diet."
A bit of planning goes a long way. You can help by using tools first, dispersing salt evenly without piles, not applying rock salt to dry pavement, and sweeping up extra salt or sand when it’s no longer needed. No salt is safe in terms of water, despite how it’s marketed. Since there’s always a drawback with any type of de-icer, proper application is the best solution.
So how much is OK to use? The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency encourages us to apply about 2 lbs. of salt per 500 ft2. A 12 oz. coffee cup is about 1 lb. of salt. For an average driveway (about 600 sq. ft.), just under two cups should do. Practicing spot-treatment reduces this even more while still being effective.
Visit www.VLAWMO.org/residents for tips and tricks on planning a low-salt winter, or to take our salt survey to help us understand local salt application.
Free measuring cups are available at City Hall, 800 East County Road E, for pick-up. For questions, call VLAWMO at (651) 204-2070.