Sunday, June 22, 2008

Camp Long Naturalist Explores Fauntleroy Waters Jun 28

From Sheila Brown at Camp Long:

Camp Long Naturalist Explores Fauntleroy Waters

Fauntleroy Forest Walk Restoring our H2O
Sat, June 28, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Ages 8 and older
Take a walk on the wild side! Learn about the Fauntleroy watershed. Why is the water so clean in this creek and who is responsible for its restoration? We will hike the "Reach to the Beach," check out new developments along the waterfront, the fish ladder and maybe stop by the bakery for a treat on our way back! Please pack a lunch and drinking water. Pre-registration required by 6/27/08. Please call 206-684-7434 to register.

Course #30706 Activity Fee $8.00

Excerpts from Washington State Department of Ecology's website.

Fauntleroy Creek is an urban creek located four miles south of Alki Point on the West Seattle peninsula. Fed perennially by runoff and springs, the creek begins in Fauntleroy Park and flows about one mile through alternating culverts and open reaches before entering Fauntleroy Cove in Puget Sound.

Water Quality Issues
Fauntleroy Creek has too much fecal coliform bacteria. Stream samples from the creek show bacteria levels beyond what Washington State allows in our freshwaters. Fauntleroy Creek is not unique. Fecal coliform bacteria are a common water quality problem in our state. They belong to a mostly harmless group of bacteria commonly found in large numbers in the feces of people and other warm-blooded animals such as pets and wildlife. However, they indicate that more serious disease-causing organisms, called pathogens, may be present in the water. Stormwater runoff and other discharges can carry these small organisms into the creeks where they pollute the water and can infect humans through skin contact or ingestion of water.

What is being done?
The federal Clean Water Act requires states to place the names of water bodies that exceed state pollution standards on a list. The Clean Water Act then requires a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study for these impaired water bodies to identify the pollution problems and specify how much pollution needs to be reduced to achieve clean water. A TMDL is an estimated amount of a pollutant a water body can handle without exceeding the state water quality standards.

In 2007, the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) produced the fecal coliform TMDL study for Fauntleroy Creek. This report can be found at www.ecy.wa.gov/biblio/0710037.html.

As a follow-up to the TMDL study, Ecology has been working with the local community to prepare a Water Quality Implementation Plan that details the specific actions needed to reduce fecal coliform bacteria levels in Fauntleroy Creek. The plan describes management roles, activities, and schedules for partners. The City of Seattle and Fauntleroy Watershed Council have been active partners in restoring Fauntleroy Creek for years and assisted in the development of this plan. Public comment on the Water Quality Implementation Plan has just been completed.

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