Washington State: Bold cleanup plan to save Puget Sound gets green light
December 1, 2008
OLYMPIA — The Puget Sound Partnership today adopted an Action Agenda to clean up Puget Sound that will not only put Puget Sound on the path to recovery, but will also give a boost to local economies.The final version pays close attention to rainwater/ stormwater runoff. And that makes some environmentalists happy.
The Puget Sound Partnership is a community effort of citizens, governments, tribes, scientists and businesses working together to restore and protect Puget Sound.
The mission given to the Puget Sound Partnership by Gov. Chris Gregoire and the Legislature is to create a real Action Agenda that turns things around and leads to a healthy Puget Sound by 2020.
For the first time, the Action Agenda provides critical data and a strategy for tackling these threats to the waters in and around Puget Sound. Its four cornerstones are driven by the latest available science and are results-oriented:
- Protect the last remaining intact places.
- Restore damaged and polluted sites to health.
- Stop water pollution at its source.
- Coordinate all protection, restoration and cleanup efforts.
The Action Agenda addresses four key questions:
- What is a healthy Puget Sound?
- What is the current status of Puget Sound and what are the biggest threats to it?
- What actions must be taken to move from where we are today to a healthy Puget Sound by 2020?
- Where do we start?
It is intended to be a living and adaptable guide for use by federal and state agencies, Indian tribes, city and county governments, business and environmental organizations, watershed groups, and individual landowners as they take action to protect and restore the Sound.
The Action Agenda's adoption follows nearly 18 months of outreach to and collaboration with scientists, policy experts, business and environmental interests, Indian tribes, all levels of government, and local communities throughout the Sound.
The Partnership today fulfilled its statutory obligation to submit the Action Agenda to the Legislature by Dec. 1.
With the Action Agenda adopted, the Partnership will now focus on implementation of cleanup and restoration work, including:
- Getting near-term actions accomplished,
- Developing an accountability system for achieving results, including performance, effectiveness and the efficient use of money spent on cleanup; and
- Promoting public awareness about the state of the Sound and what people can do to bring it back to health.
The Action Agenda can be found online at www.psp.wa.gov.