Runoff of Deicing Salt: Effect on Irondequoit Bay, Rochester, New York

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Science  11 Jun 1971:
Vol. 172, Issue 3988, pp. 1128-1132
DOI: 10.1126/science.172.3988.1128


Salt used for deicing the streets near Rochester, New York, has increased the chloride concentration in Irondequoit Bay at least fivefold during the past two decades. During the winter of 1969-70 the quantity and salinity of the dense runoff that accumulated on the bottom of the bay was sufficient to prevent complete vertical mixing of the bay during the spring. Comparison with 1939 conditions indicates that the period of summer stratification has been prolonged a month by the density gradient imposed by the salt runoff.