Toronto, Dec. 09, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- WWF-Canada and Environment and Climate Change Canada will be visiting Ryerson University to view the results of the campus’ road salt reduction pilot. Ryerson Urban Water (RUW) and Ryerson Facilities Management and Development (FMD) collaborated with WWF-Canada to change the way road salt is used so that it creates safe public spaces and also reduces the negative impacts to the environment.

Last winter (2018–19), the FMD team created an in-house liquid brine solution (a mixture of salt and water) to de-ice 20 locations across Ryerson’s downtown campus. The pilot resulted in a significantly lower amount of road salt use — a reduction of approximately 200 fewer 20kg bags of salt being diverted from potentially reaching our waterways. More importantly, the brine application didn’t compromise pedestrian safety on campus. The pilot has been extended to the entire campus for this winter season.

Road salt’s chloride component is toxic to freshwater species and ecosystems, and unhealthy levels are seen year-round. WWF-Canada’s Great Lakes Hot Spot Map highlights how excessive runoff from winter road salt application is affecting species like fish, frogs and mussels in the spring and summer months.

Elizabeth Hendriks, Vice President Freshwater says:

“Businesses and individuals across Ontario are over-salting parking lots, sidewalks and roadways. The Great Lakes are home to over 200 at-risk species so it’s important to protect these waterways. Supporting collaborations like the Ryerson pilot is an excellent way to demonstrate the possible through better management practices to protect wildlife and ecosystems.”

Visit details

Date: Thursday, December 12th, 2019

Meeting location: Balzac’s Café (Ryerson Imaging Arts Building). 122 Bond St, Toronto, ON

Time: 10:00 a.m. —12:00 p.m.

We’ll visit the Living Labs facilities and observe brine application on Gould Street. WWF-Canada and Ryerson staff will be available for interviews during the visit.

About World Wildlife Fund Canada 
WWF-Canada creates solutions to the environmental challenges that matter most for Canadians. We work in places that are unique and ecologically important, so that nature, wildlife and people thrive together. Because we are all wildlife. For more information, visit wwf.ca

Alexandra del Castello
WWF-Canada, Associate Specialist, communications
416 407 9232
adelcastello@wwfcanada.org