Your role in reducing chloride pollution
Road salt affects local lakes, streams and drinking water, and it can get into the sewer system. After a snowmelt or winter rain, salty runoff or groundwater can flow into open points in the system and significantly elevate the amount of chloride we receive at the District. Road salt applicators can help reduce chloride by employing smart winter maintenance practices that minimize the need for salt.
Actions for road salt applicators
Here are some recommended actions to help road salt applicators keep chloride out of the sewer system:
- Get certified. Applicators should be certified through the City of Madison’s Winter Salt Certification program, which trains winter maintenance professionals on practices that keep surfaces safe without excessive salt use.
- Practice Salt Wise winter maintenance. All applicators should follow practices that minimize salt use, such as always physically removing snow and ice with shovels, plows or brooms before applying any chemical. Find recommended actions and resources for winter maintenance on the Wisconsin Salt Wise website.
- Have the right equipment. Using tools like brooms, ice scrapers, brine applicators, pavement thermometers and salt alternatives can help applicators remove snow and ice while using the least amount of salt. To help ensure you have the right equipment on hand, the District has road salt incentive programs that can partially fund projects to reduce road salt use. These funds are part of our chloride reduction grants so that Wisconsin’s road salt applicators can be leaders in water quality protection.