Today in the other Washington, Puget Sound cleanup efforts received a 150% boost in federal funding, setting clean water among top priorities among Washington politicians.
According to an article by Les Blumenthal in the News Tribune,
“Federal funding to clean up Puget Sound would jump by 150 percent, to $50 million, under a spending bill approved Wednesday by the House interior appropriations subcommittee.
The money would be provided to the Environmental Protection Agency for use on such projects as monitoring the recovery of the Nisqually River estuary and cleaning up toxic waste in the Duwamish River, Elliot Bay and other sites near Bellingham, Anacortes and Olympia. But the EPA’s main emphasis is trying to get a handle on controlling storm-water runoff into the Sound, perhaps the single biggest problem.”
Click here for a map of Puget Sound cleanup areas.
The article continues:
“The $50 million puts the Puget Sound cleanup on par with the effort in Chesapeake Bay. The White House sought $475 million in the coming year for the effort to clean up the Great Lakes.
“Puget Sound is the second-largest estuary in the country,” Dicks said. “We need to make a significant commitment.”
The budget will now go to the House Appropriations Committee. In 2005, Governor Gregoire’s pledged to make this a national priority – let’s hope it passes!