Today the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation released the long- awaited report by the Adirondack Road Salt Reduction Task Force detailing their findings and recommendations for the upcoming winter. The task force is the result of a bill introduced by Assemblyman D. Billy Jones (D- Chateaugay Lake) that was signed by Governor Hochul in 2021.
“I am glad this important report has been released and the state agencies involved can begin reviewing the task force’s recommendations,” Jones said. “Road salt can have long-term impacts on our environment, polluting waterways and creating risks to human health and the environment. I am proud to have authored the bill that created this task force, and I look forward to reviewing the report’s recommendations thoroughly so they may be implemented in a pilot program as soon as possible. The next important step for the State is to ensure they allocate funding to support the task force’s recommendations and assist homeowners and other dwellings impacted by known sources of road salt contamination.”
The Task Force’s assessment addresses the impacts of road salt on public health and the environment, and upon reviewing the current winter road management practices, they have provided recommendations including:
- Managing “cold spots” on roadways: Implementing a selective vegetation management pilot as an alternative to the need for frequent and excess road salt application in certain locations.
- Chloride free zone(s): To develop a “Proof of Concept” model that achieving safety and performance expectations can be met when using chloride-free deicing alternatives.
- Seasonal speed warnings: To develop a “Proof of Concept” that weather warning signage statements provide opportunities to reduce road salt rates and the frequency of application.