News Flash

Posted on: November 14, 2018

Reducing Winter Salt Application - A Quick Reminder on How to Protect Our Lakes in Winter

cwmn_sidewalk salt-Salt4

Salt pollutes. Snowmelt and rain wash leftover sidewalk salt into local lakes and groundwater. Once there, it cannot be removed. Too much salt can harm fish and plants in local lakes. Follow these tips to reduce your impact when clearing snow and ice.

"If you see it, it was overdone," a Master Water Steward sums it up perfectly.  If you see a bunch of salt left behind after you've completed your snow and ice clearing, it's time to sweep up what's left behind.

Here are 7 pollution redu...

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More on the Hazardous Effects of Road Salt... Natural Resources
Posted on: October 12, 2018

Buckthorn Stands Out in Fall, Making Removal Easier

Buckthorn in Understory

Why is fall the best time of year to get rid of Buckthorn? Because it is so easy to find. Buckthorn tends to stay green and hold its leaves longer than most shrubs and small trees.

Buckthorn is a shrub or small tree that has invaded from Europe.  It has taken over much of the understory of southern Minnesota, out competing our native forest plants.  And though it has lots of berries that birds like to eat, those be...

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More About Buckthorn... Natural Resources
Posted on: October 8, 2018

Remember to Clean Leaves from Streets and Sidewalks to Prevent Street Flooding and Help Local Lakes


Leaves left in the curb and gutter will get washed into stormdrains when it rains. This can clog stormdrains and cause flooding. Leaves washed into stormdrains also end up in local lakes where they cause algal blooms when they break down.

We need your help keeping leaves out of stormdrains on the street.  Stormdrains are connected to neighborhood ponds and lakes by underground pipes.  What gets washed into stormdrains when it rains, ends up in those same lakes and ponds. ...

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Information on How to Dispose of Leaves... Natural Resources
Posted on: October 1, 2018

Are You Responsible for Winter Parking Lot and Sidewalk Maintenance? Get Certified in Smart Salting.


The MPCA’s Smart Salting trainings provide suggestions to improve operator effectiveness and for reducing chloride pollution while keeping the roads, parking lots, and sidewalks safe. Many organizations have been able to reduce their salt use by 30-70%!

Minnesota waters need a low-salt diet

Doctors tell us to stick to a low-salt diet. Our lakes and streams should follow the same advice. While salt helps to keep our roads safe in the winter, it contains chloride, a water pollutant.  It takes only ...

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Learn About Smart Salting Training... Natural Resources