Daily Archives: August 26, 2015

Keeping the Rivers of Oregon Safe

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Dead fish in a river

What toxic chemicals are of concern?

At the direction of the Oregon Legislature (SB 737, 2007 Oregon Legislature), the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has compiled a list of Priority Persistent Pollutants—chemicals that pose a threat to Oregon’s rivers and streams, fish and wildlife. The eco-certification programs promoted here have agreed to eliminate or reduce these Priority Persistent Pollutants in all products they certify, and to incorporate that inventory of toxic pollutants into screening and ranking systems. More information is available on the State of Oregon DEQ website.

How did the project get started and who funded it?

Using funding from the ACWA General Fund, ACWA member agencies, and a Oregon DEQ grant provided by the US Environmental Protection Agency, a project steering committee worked with two national consultants—Dr. Lauren Heine of Clean Production Action and Pamela Brody-Heine of Eco-Stewardship Strategies—to convince high priority, national eco-certification programs to incorporate the Oregon Priority Persistent Pollutant chemical inventory into their screening systems. Of the nine programs targeted, eight agreed to participate.

Contributors to the project included the City of McMinnville, City of Pendleton, City of Portland—Bureau of Environmental Services, City of Salem, Clackamas County Water Environment Services, Clean Water Services, and Oak Lodge Sanitary District.

A technical advisory team directed the project, including representatives of the Oregon Military Department, City of Portland—Bureau of Environmental Services, Oregon Health Authority, City of Lake Oswego, Oregon Environmental Council, Clean Water Services, Metro, National Association of Clean Water Agencies, Oregon DEQ, and Zero Waste Alliance.

The research aspect of the project was funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under assistance agreement C9-00045110 to the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. The contents of this document do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency, nor does mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.