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Morning on the Campo San Barnaba
Snow in Venice

Salt on Venice's bridges

Salt on Ponte Foscari
ABOVE: Salt on the Foscari bridge, near the city's firehouse and Ca' Foscari University.

Venice is having a cold snap, and city work crews have been spreading salt on pedestrian bridges to melt any snow that falls or ice that forms. The salt's texture is more like that of a coarse table salt than the rock salt used in American cities like Chicago or Minneapolis. 

Unlike public-works managers in those cities, Venice's officials don't need to worry about salt polluting rivers or lakes: Venice is on the Venetian Lagoon, which connects with the Adriatic Sea, and the amount of salt that washes into the canals is infinitesimal compared to the quantity of salt that flows in with the tides every day.

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