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Saving Puget Sound

Actions we're taking to protect and restore Puget Sound


  • Water Quality Standards - The basis for protecting and regulating the quality of all surface waters in Washington. They address designated uses, water quality criteria and antidegradation.
  • Spill prevention – Zero spills strategy, to prevent any oil or hazardous substances from entering our waters.
  • Federal grants - Ecology passes federal funds to state, local and Tribal governments to support efforts to protect and restore Puget Sound.


  • Puget Sound Initiative (PSI) Site Cleanups - In response to the Puget Sound Initiative and increased funding, efforts to clean and restore contaminated sites within identified priority bays have accelerated. These bays are the cornerstones of protecting and restoring Puget Sound.
  • Stormwater – Stormwater is rain and snow melt that runs off surfaces such as rooftops, paved streets, highways, and parking lots. As water runs off these surfaces, it can pick up toxic contaminants and other pollution and carry them to Puget Sound.
  • Water quality cleanup – The federal Clean Water Act establishes limits on pollutants that can be discharged to state water bodies and still allow state standards to be met. This site provides information on current and historical Water Quality Improvement Projects (also known as TMDLs).
  • Wastewater Treatment – Thanks to wastewater treatment, the dirty wastewater that leaves our homes, offices, schools and buildings is treated before it is released back into the environment. This helps keep everybody healthy and protects the health of our lakes, rivers, and marine waters.
  • Loans and grants for water quality projects – Find out more about Water Quality grant and loan opportunities and recipients as well as case studies about specific projects.


  • Shoreline Management - Shoreline Master Programs (SMP) govern the use and development of shorelines in Washington State, striving to balance responsible shoreline development with environmental protection and public access.
  • Puget Sound Watershed Characterization Project - includes watershed assessments of: water flow; water quality; landscape assessments of fish and wildlife habitat in three environments (terrestrial, freshwater, marine). The assessments prioritize small watersheds, or habitat areas, relative to one another for their protection and restoration value.
  • Wetland mitigation banks - Mitigation banking creates an economic incentive for restoring, creating, enhancing and/or preserving wetlands.
  • Washington Conservation Corps (WCC)