In war on road ice, cities explore unconventional alternatives to salt
Garlic salt. Molasses. Beet Juice. Cheese brine. These are ingredients for a wintertime recipe – to melt snow- and ice-covered roads. Canada’s CBC News reports that some cities are turning to these and other environmentally friendly options as substitutes for road salt, which can damage cars, vegetation, animals and even shoes.
Toronto is among the cities treating wintry streets with a mixture that includes beet juice, which helps road salt melt ice at very low temperatures. Molasses is considered effective at helping salt stay on roads and at reducing its corrosiveness. Garlic salt has been sprinkled in one American town to de-ice streets, leaving them filled with a pungent scent.
Even cheese brine is an option on frozen thoroughfares. The New York Times reports here that the city of Milwaukee launched a pilot program in December to “repurpose” the liquid, used to soak cheeses, as a safe, low-cost option to thaw roads.