As a first step towards a long-term cleanup plan, the Department of Ecology this week outlined an agreement with the owner of a Duwamish River property to test its soil, groundwater, surface water and sediments for contamination.
The so-called Agreed Order outlines a series of investigations into the nature and extent of pollution at the five-acre Duwamish Shipyards property at 5658 West Marginal Way SW. It establishes a process for evaluating cleanup options and developing a draft cleanup plan.
Cleaning up soil contamination is crucial to the health of Puget Sound, says Thea Levkovitz, coordinator for the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition. Of the cleanup plan, she says, "We'll want to see specifics that aren't there yet, but this is the first step. We can't move forward with overall river cleanup with ongoing sources of pollution present."
Preliminary tests by the Duwamish Shipyard, Inc., which operated on the site from 1941 to 2007, have turned up polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), dioxins, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and metals such as arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead and zinc.
The proposed Agreed Order is available for public review and comment at Ecology's web site: www.ecy.wa.gov.