South Sound Clean Water Partners (formerly the Pierce County Shellfish Partners) exists to protect and improve water quality. Established in 2006, the collaboration between Pierce County, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department and Pierce Conservation District grew. The Partnership now includes Thurston County, Mason County and Kitsap County. With more partners and more areas being monitored, it was important to change the name of the organization to reflect all partners.
The Partnership remains committed to preventing shellfish bed closures due to poor water quality and to ensuring that harvested shellfish is safe to eat. The Partnership is also committed to keeping streams and lakes safe for swimming and fishing. Fecal coliform bacteria is our main focus. High fecal coliform levels have caused Pierce county to establish Shellfish Protection Districts around Burley Lagoon and Rocky, Filucy and Vaughn bays.
There are simple ways that you can prevent water pollution.
In Pierce County, there are more than 8,400 acres of shellfish growing areas. Washington State Department of Health (DOH) regularly collects marine water quality samples in these areas to ensure shellfish are safe to eat. You can learn more about DOH's shellfish monitoring program by visiting their Shellfish Growing Areas page.
The 2018-19 Key Peninsula Water Quality Report is the second water quality report for the area showing how the community and stakeholders are working to improve water quality health for habitat and people. This special insert is printed and published in the Key Peninsula News.
The Clean Water Partners published its first Key Peninsula Water Quality Report in October 2017 as an insert in the Key Peninsula News. The report grades water quality in Key Peninsula streams and marine waters. It also includes information on toxic algae levels in local lakes.
The stream grades were developed by Pierce County based on many years of water quality monitoring data. Washington State Department of Health developed the grading method of marine areas for this report. Lake water quality is sampled by Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department for potential toxic algae growth only.