Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Ripple Effects

Salt Pollution

Every year, thousands of pounds of salt are imported into Wisconsin and used in water softeners, for winter maintenance, and for other applications. Did you know that once you use salt, it doesn't go away? It doesn't get filtered out at the wastewater treatment plant, and instead, it infiltrates into our groundwater or travels to our lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands, putting aquatic life at risk and endangering our freshwater resources. Visit WI Saltwise (exit disclaimer) to learn what you can do!

  1. Did you know, it only takes one teaspoon of salt to permanently pollute up to 5 gallons of water?
  2. Believe it or not, a 12 oz. cup of salt is enough to treat an entire 20-foot driveway or 10 sidewalk squares. Scatter the salt leaving space between the grains.
  3. When pavement temps drop below 15°F, salt won’t work. Switch to sand for traction or a different ice melter that works at lower temperatures.
  4. Hire a winter maintenance professional that has already been certified through the Winter Salt Certification Program or encourage your current applicator to become certified.

Helpful Resources