Duwamish Waterway Cleanup Efforts Underway

The Washington Department of Ecology has directed Jorgensen Forge Corp. to continue studying soil and groundwater contamination at its industrial property along the Duwamish Waterway in Seattle.

The manufacturer of large-scale special metal products has conducted some site investigations, including partial cleanup work in 2014 (under a 2007 agreed order with Ecology), to determine if contamination on the site is a source of pollutants in Duwamish sediments.

The five-mile Lower Duwamish Waterway is a sediment cleanup site, jointly managed by Ecology and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Ecology oversees a variety of efforts to control sources of pollution that could recontaminate waterway sediments after cleanup – including cleanups at contaminated sites along or near the Duwamish.

This site still has contamination that could flow with groundwater back to the river and its bank,” said Robert Warren, regional supervisor for Ecology’s Toxics Cleanup Program. “We’re involved with other industrial sites with similar threats. All of these cleanups are critical to the overall Duwamish cleanup, and its goals of protecting public health and the environment.

Ecology issued an enforcement order directing Jorgensen to complete a site investigation and study of cleanup options throughout its 21-acre property, located at 8531 East Marginal Way S.

Earlier studies of the site identified contaminants including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), petroleum compounds and metals, in soil and groundwater. Ecology has agreed orders for cleanup studies or other actions at 18 sites along or near the Duwamish Waterway.

Ecology is accepting public comment on the order through April 23, 2015.

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