News from the Puget Sound Partnership

MEDIA CONTACT
Alicia Lawver
(360) 464-2011
alicia.lawver@psp.wa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
12-02-2014

Statement by PSP Leadership Council Chair on EPA's Lower Duwamish Superfund cleanup plan

LINK TO EPA NEWS RELEASE

“The river that runs through the heart of Seattle, named after Chief Sealth’s tribe, the Duwamish, carries with it another name: Superfund. The majesty of Puget Sound and its tributaries often masks the shame that toxins have flowed into our waterways for over a century. The release today by EPA of the final cleanup plan for the Lower Duwamish represents a victory for the river, a document of hope and promise, that the river will one day be restored to a dynamic ecosystem that supports sustainable, healthy and equitable communities along its shores as it once did,” said Martha Kongsgaard, Chair of the Puget Sound Partnership’s Leadership Council. “In restoring the river, we acknowledge the need to maintain the ecosystem integrity of this important working waterfront while also making good on our promise to honor tribal treaty rights and the rights of its neighbors to a healthy environment. As we all know, it will also take our vigilance to protect its waters from further degradation from ongoing upstream and end of pipe contamination.”

“I applaud the many partners who recognized and embraced the need for a healthier Duwamish River and have already gotten started on this essential and complex work. Great deep thanks and acknowledgement should be given to the community voices who have spoken tirelessly and effectively for the river and the people who live on it. Together we can improve the health of our waterways and our people as we create a future we can be proud of.”

The Lower Duwamish Waterway Superfund cleanup project is listed as a key ongoing program in the 2014 Puget Sound Action Agenda (B4.1). Section B of the Action Agenda covers priorities for the marine and nearshore environment, including to protect and steward working waterfronts and improve public access to Puget Sound.

The Action Agenda is the prioritized “roadmap” that guides investments in projects that are likely to bring about the most efficient, accelerated path to Puget Sound recovery. The prioritization is based on our best understanding of the science at any point in time as well as the data we glean from effectiveness information and ecosystem monitoring. The Action Agenda also serves as the Comprehensive Conservation & Management Plan for the Puget Sound National Estuary Program.

About the Partnership
The Puget Sound Partnership is the state agency that leads and coordinates the efforts of governments, tribes, scientists, businesses and nonprofits to set priorities for Puget Sound recovery, implement a regional recovery plan, and ensure accountability for results. For more information, go to www.psp.wa.gov.

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