The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Washington Department of Ecology share the lead roles in the effort to clean up and preserve the Lower Duwamish.
EPA is responsible for the overall cleanup plan. Working with agencies and businesses located on the Waterway, EPA coordinates the main study of the contamination: what it is, how much of it there is, and where it is. When EPA’s study is complete, it will issue a report that describes how the cleanup of contaminated sediments will take place and who will responsible for doing so.
The role of the Washington Department of Ecology complements the work that EPA does. Ecology, working with local agencies, focuses on finding the active sources of contamination going into the Lower Duwamish and then reducing or removing them.
This role, known as “source control” is important not only for keeping the Waterway from becoming more contaminated, but also for keeping the Waterway clean after it has been cleaned up. Without good source control, Washingtonians may have to pay to clean up the same site again and again.
The Urban Waters Initiative, funded by Governor Gregoire and the legislature, made available approximately $775,000 to boost source control work on the Lower Duwamish.
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