DULUTH (AP) --  Researchers are trying to come up with an alternative to road salt in an effort to protect Minnesota water bodies from contamination.

Reports say road salt is the top source of chloride in Minnesota water bodies. The Minnesota Department of Transportation and the University of Minnesota Duluth's Natural Resources Research Institute are testing the environmental effects of potassium acetate, a liquid de-icer used on airport runways.

The chemical is biodegradable, doesn't corrode infrastructure and workers in colder temperatures than salt. It's also seven times more expensive and researchers don't know how runoff could affect state waterways.