During these icy and snowy months, it is important to be aware of the products you are using for ice melt.  Rock salt can be corrosive to lawns and vegetation and also cement and steel, and damaging to pets’ paws. When it runs off, it can get into the waterways and that is not good for our water supply.  Look for alternatives that can be a better alternative to Rock Salt and magnesium chloride: 

Kitty Litter:
Although not going to melt the ice, it can provide traction on the sidewalks. 

Urea:
Although this is sold with a lot of “Green” ice melt products and it won’t hurt pets, it can be really damaging to your plants and soils, so check ingredients and decide where you use it.  Avoid using it near the garden. 

Alfalfa Meal:
This is a super effective, natural, green ice melting alternative. It’s 100 percent natural, and is usually used as a fertilizer. It’s grainy so it will provide traction and is extremely effective when used in moderation. 

Sugar Beet Juice:
The juice from sugar beets lowers the melting point of ice and snow, which helps to clear your driveway. It’s even been used to melt ice and snow on municipal roads in some areas. It’s safe for animals, people, metals, concrete and plants. Beet juice is one of the only options which are effective below negative 20 degrees Celsius. 

Sand or coffee grounds:
Sprinkle sand over your icy surfaces to provide traction. The darker colors of coffee grounds absorb more heat and help to melt snow and ice. 

Don’t underestimate the importance of shoveling. A good shovel will clear your drive while giving you a great workout, and it’s the most natural, environmentally friendly and green way to get rid of ice and snow this winter. 

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