KSU professor: Road salt appears to be affecting local ecosystems | Kent State University

KSU professor: Road salt appears to be affecting local ecosystems

By Briana Barker, reporter Record-Courier

KSU professor: Road salt appears to be affecting local ecosystems

Insects, fish and plant life may be negatively impacted by one of the things that keeps motorists safe during the winter - salt.

Salt keeps the streets and sidewalks safe by melting ice that covers them. But Anne Jefferson, a geology professor at Kent State University says if it is too cold, the salt doesn't work. 

"Below about 10 degrees Fahrenheit, it takes a lot of salt to melt only a little bit of ice," Jefferson said. 

However, it isn't the ineffectiveness of salt that she finds disturbing, but the amount that is used. 

"I don't want to bad-mouth any city or even the university because I don't know what technology they use," Jefferson said. "But my guess, just by watching the salt applications around the city, is that we are not metering super carefully and we are definitely over-applying on campus and in the city at least on some occasions." 

Portage County Engineer Michael Marozzi said the county has applied 3,700 tons of salt so far this season to county and township highways...

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POSTED: Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 3:21pm
UPDATED: Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 3:21pm