A mural stretches along a path outside of the Tukwila Community Center. Photo Credit: David Ryder

Environment USA6. November 2020

This River Was Highly Toxic, Now It Is Healing

Once labeled one the most toxic sites in the U.S. by the Environmental Protection Agency in 2001, the Duwamish River that runs through Seattle is healing, following two decades of cleanup.

According to James Rasmussen, a former tribal council member and currently the Superfund manager for the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition, the Duwamish is probably the cleanest it’s been in a hundred years, but the work continues. “We can’t relax, we can’t stop,” he says. Like the river itself, “we have to keep moving.”

On October 27, the Port of Seattle announced that they will adopt new, community-selected names for the six parks along the river’s shores. This initiative is an important step to connect the river to its history and to “create a river for all” where industries and people can coexist in a healthy way. 

Seattle Met

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