Salt in our River

From the Ottawa Riverkeeper Newsletter for January 30 2020:

Salt in the Watershed

Did you know that road salt can be toxic to aquatic environments? For several years we have shared the downsides to using road salt, given tips to reduce personal usage, and recommended alternatives.

But what if you could directly measure the impact of road salt on our watershed? This winter we are piloting a new community based monitoring initiative, which will involve sampling water at local creeks to determine the changes in the level of salinity over the season. Data will be collected by a team of volunteers and these findings will lead to a deeper understanding of how the levels of salt applied in snowy weather are changing your river.

This is an exciting new initiative, and was inspired by fellow Waterkeeper Alliance member Milwaukee Riverkeeper. To get things rolling, the team has been scouting good locations and taking preliminary samples, learning what these results can show us about road salt use in the watershed. Riverkeeper Elizabeth Logue has also been taking a look at the sites, and talking about the issue to the media. Thanks to volunteer, and local creek enthusiast, Gwendolyn Frankton for helping with this initial exploration of potential sites.

This project was made possible thanks to funding from: