County has abundant resources along its marine shorelines that
rely on clean water. One of the primary goals of Skagit County's
Clean Water Program (CWP) is to ensure the waters are free of
pollution. In recent years, however, the Samish Basin has suffered
severe fecal coliform pollution issues.
Bacteria in the Samish
River, other streams, and the bay, often reach levels too high
for safe shellfish harvest and recreation. In addition, farmers
are worried about the water quality and the need to provide consumers
the assurance that their food products are safe. These problems
have attracted regional attention and are now the focus of the
Clean Samish Initiative (CSI).
The CSI is a joint partnership effort involving Skagit County,
the State Departments of Ecology and Health, the Skagit Conservation
District, the Skagit Conservation Education Alliance, the Samish
Tribe, the Western Washington Agricultural Association, the Washington
State Dairy Federation, EPA, and Taylor Shellfish, among others.
The CSI's goal is to achieve both short and long-term pollution
reductions in the Samish Basin.