New York State to Pour 50,000 Gallons of Beet Juice All Over Roads to Melt Ice

by , 12/21/12
filed under: Urban Design,Weather
green design, eco design, sustainable design, icy roads, beet juice on icy roads, environmentally safe road salt

Image ©Stacy Spensley

New Yorkers are used to having beets in their salads, pastas and fresh juices, but we could soon have them on our roads as well. The idea is part of New York State’s pilot program to test out more environmentally-friendly ways to prevent icy roads, and will entail dumping a mix of 50,000 gallons of beet juice and brine on highways to keep cars from dangerously slipping and sliding during the winter months.

green design, eco design, sustainable design, icy roads, beet juice on icy roads, environmentally safe road salt

Image ©Ed Yourdon

It turns out that beet juice doesn’t just do a body good – it can help with automobile safety too. The purply-brown substance is chock full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, but also has the incredible property of helping to delay icing. Adding beet juice to salt amps up its ability to prevent ice from forming.

The beet brine can be prepared in advance and spread on roads before it snows or temperatures drop, making it a preventative action rather than a re-active solution for after roads become icy. This not only saves money and manpower in potentially dangerous driving situations, but it’s also less corrosive for roads, which could reduce after-winter repairs. Since beets are all natural, the lack of chemicals is better for animals, and the solution also won’t leak toxins into our water table.

Via Gothamist

Images ©Ed Yourdon and ©Stacy Spensley



  1. beadfreak7 December 5, 2013 at 10:25 pm
    So .....sugar in the streets has got to be good news for the bugs and rats
  2. Margeret Maicus April 11, 2013 at 9:44 am
    Thank you for the wise critique. Me & my neighbour were preparing to do some research about that. We received a excellent book on that matter from our local library and most books exactly where not as influensive as your information. I am extremely glad to see these information which I was searching for a long time.
  3. TAMATAR February 8, 2013 at 11:12 am
    would love to know if testing has been done on what happens to all the stains and coloring\\\\\\\'s it does by splashing around ...its a very potent coloring agent too..... i am imagining all white cars splashed red ...
  4. Jasmine Tokuda February 1, 2013 at 3:31 pm
    .......This give a whole new meaning to the term "Borscht Belt"........
  5. User1 February 1, 2013 at 2:24 pm
    Regular beets or sugar beets? This works because beets are so high in sugar, and sugar with salt helps ice melt better. The trouble with using sugar beets on icy roads is that they are GMO, and anything that increases demand for GMO sugar beets is a BAD thing...