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Salt Impact On The Environment - LEX18.com | Continuous News and StormTracker Weather

Salt Impact On The Environment

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LEXINGTON, Ky (LEX 18) All the salt used to treat roads doesn't just disappear, it washes away into our creeks and streams.The City takes measures to minimize harm.

"The salt dissolves. That's what it's supposed to do. That's how it does its job but what that means is, when it washes off the streets, it goes down into the storm drains which goes straight to our local creeks and streams," said Angela Poe with Storm Water Program Public Information.

The city's Storm Water program monitors how it affects water quality.

"Those additional salts increase the conductivity of our waterways and we already naturally have high conductivity so it is something we need to be aware of," said Poe.

Too much salt getting into the soil can be bad for plants too, so the city takes measures to minimize the amount of salt used while still keeping everyone safe.

In addition to other chemical additives, Lexington streets and road crews use more environmentally friendly products like beet sugar.

"Not only does it help lower the freezing point of snow or ice, it also helps the rock salt adhere to the road,” said Poe. 

That allows for less use of salt, which is good for the environment and the city's budget.

“Not only to we want to protect the environment, we all live and work here, too, but to be good stewards of tax payer dollars, if we can use less of a product, we can use that money for another program,” she said. 

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