Johnson County, like a number of other counties in the state, takes part in the CMAQ (Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality) Dust Abatement Program for those affected by energy development.
According to County Road and Bridge Supervisor Scott Pehringer, Johnson County uses calcium chloride on its roads, which is a chemical in a pellet form that helps keep dust down and also helps hold the roadway surface together.
Pehringer said there are no issues for humans, animals or even vehicles with the pellet form of the chemical, but did say that if people do get a light dusting on their vehicles they can rinse it off pretty easily.
Johnson County spends about $700,000 per year on the CMAQ program, with the state paying for 80% and the county paying for 20% of the costs, according to Pehringer.
The county has been involved in the program for seven years.
Pehringer explains how many miles and on which specific roads the county typically does dust abatement on.
Johnson County has not put any calcium chloride down yet this year, opting to wait until the majority of wet weather is done. The county will begin putting the pellets down “hard and heavy” after Memorial Day Weekend, according to Pehringer.