Some states are switching to beet juice and beer to ‘salt’ icy roads, sidewalks

Most snowy places around the country throw salt on the roads to eliminate ice and improve road conditions. According to New Herald, experts fear all this road salt tossed onto sidewalks and scattered on highways, is having an alarming impact on the environment. Conscious of this fact, some cities are turning to less conventional materials to get the job done: beet juice, molasses, cheese brine, and beer. Researchers on the subject cite mounting evidence that the 20 million tons of sodium chloride crystals used each year is increasing the salinity of hundreds of lakes — particularly in the Midwest and Northeast. In the past 50 years, chloride concentrates in some of the sampled lakes have quadrupled, and in a few cases, even increased a hundredfold. If the problem is not corrected, they warn, the runoff could threaten freshwater ecosystems and put everything from frogs to microscopic zooplankton at risk. As the negative effects are…

Use plastic bags in Kenya and get time in prison

If you lived in Kenya, you’d think twice before heading to the store without your stack of reusable shopping bags. The East African nation has made a big push for its citizens to reduce or eliminate plastic bag usage by making the production, sale or use of any single-use plastic bags punishable by four years in jail or up to a $38,000 fine. More than 40 other countries already have similar laws prohibiting or taxing plastic bag users including China, Rwanda and the United Kingdom. One major problem with the plastic bags is they take lots of energy and oil to produce, but are only used once before ending up in a landfill. Since plastics can’t biodegrade, they will last centuries underground. Some estimates say they can take between 500 and 1,000 years to break down. A third of all plastic bags are also ending up in our oceans. The bags are broken down into micro plastics…