U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Region 10 Bulletin - EPA 910/9-92-043
                                   November 2008
Agencies Accept EPA's  "Federal  Green Challenge
When senior executives
from 19 Pacific Northwest
federal agencies gathered
in Seattle recently, their
goal was ambitious—to
reduce the federal
government's "carbon
footprint" in Alaska and the
Pacific Northwest by about
9 million pounds by  next
year (roughly equivalent to
450,000 gallons of gasoline
saved). The program is also expected to save about
$1.8 million.

To meet its own challenge locally, EPA's regional office
has conducted an energy, water, transportation and
waste management inventory and is challenging other
federal agencies in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Wash-
ington to do the same.  EPA is inviting those agencies
to pledge to cut federal waste, reduce their "carbon
footprints," and save money. Together, partners are
EPA Shares 2008 Report on the Environment

The EPA 2008 Report on the Environment provides
information about the trends in the conditions of the air,
water, land, and human health of the United States.
This report uses scientifically sound measures, called
indicators, to address fundamental questions relevant
to EPA's mission to protect the environment and human
health. To accomplish this mission, EPA must pay
close attention to trends in environmental conditions.
This information helps EPA prioritize its work and focus
on human health and ecological activities that can lead
to improvements in the conditions of the nation's

The report gives trends and analysis on many issues,
•  Outdoor air quality and its effect on human health
   and the environment.
•  Coastal waters and their effects on human health
   and the environment.
•  The diversity and biological balance of our nation's
   ecological systems.

To explore the interactive report, visit
exploring new ways to collaborate and accomplish
measurable savings.

"The federal government is the country's largest energy
consumer and purchaser," said EPA's Regional Admin-
istrator Elin Miller. "We believe that the Federal Green
Challenge will help agencies, offices and military bases
reduce energy consumption, cut greenhouse gases,
and save taxpayer dollars."

To help,  Region 10 is hosting a monthly series of 12
webinars on topics including: Sustainability, Environ-
mental Management Systems, Energy, Transportation,
Waste, Water and Green Meetings. Visit the website
www.federalgreenchallenge.net for more information.

For details, contact Viccy Salazar, EPA, at 206-553-
1066, 800-424-4372 x1066, or salazar.viccy@epa.gov,
or Melanie Wood, EPA, at 206-553-1107, 800-424-
4372 x1107. orwood.melanie@epa.gov.
                                                   In  This Issue...
                         EPA News to uPdate
                         on agency activities,
                         pages  1-3.
Tools to clue you in on
resources, publications.
opportunities, and
services, pages 4-6.

Waterwords covering
water related issues,
page 7.

Spotlight to showcase
success stories and
environmental stars,
page 8.

Ecosystem to provide
news that goes beyond
water topics, pages 9-10.

Calendar to highlight
environmental events.
page 11.

Stormwater Permitting Update
Stormwater pollution is a challenging water quality problem. In fact, stormwater runoff is our most common cause
of water pollution. Rainwater and snowmelt run off streets, lawns, parking lots, and other surface areas.  The
water can pick up fertilizers, dirt, pesticides, oil and grease, and many other pollutants on the way to our rivers,
lakes, and coastal waters.  Runoff from some construction and industrial sites is regulated under the National
Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) wastewater permit program. Following are updates on EPA's
permitting efforts for these sources.
EPA Re-Issues Permit for Construction Site Stormwater
EPA is re-issuing a Stormwater Construction General
Permit, which expired July 1, 2008, for a two-year time
period. The permit will apply only where EPA is the
permitting authority. Here in the Northwest, that includes
Idaho and Alaska and most Indian country lands. (In
Oregon and Washington, the state environmental agen-
cies have permitting authority.)

The permit regulates the discharge of stormwater from
construction sites that disturb one acre or more of land,
and from smaller sites that are part of a larger, common
plan of development. The  permit requires operators of the
construction sites to use stormwater controls and develop
stormwater pollution prevention plans to minimize the
discharge of sediment and other pollutants.

Under the re-issued permit, new  dischargers include new
    construction sites that start construction on or after the
    effective date of this permit and those that have already
    started construction, but do not have coverage under the
    2003 permit.  Sites that have coverage under the 2003
    permit must continue to comply with the provisions of that
    permit and do not need to apply for coverage under this
    new permit.

    The permit uses most of the same terms and conditions
    as EPA's 2003 permit.  EPA is coordinating the permit with
    an effort to set national clean water standards, known as
    an effluent limitation guideline, for the construction and
    development industry.  When the guideline is final, EPA
    plans to include its provisions in a new five-year construc-
    tion general permit to be reissued no later than 2010. For
    information, contact Misha Vakoc, EPA, at 206-553-
    6650, 800-424-4372 x6650, orvakoc.misha@epa.gov.
EPA Issuing Stormwater Permit for Industries

EPA is issuing a new Stormwater Multi-Sector General
Permit (MSGP). The permit will  regulate stormwater
discharges from an estimated 4,100 industrial facilities
that require NPDES permit coverage. The permit applies
to facilities in states and territories not authorized to
implement the NPDES permit program, including Alaska,
Idaho, and most Indian country lands.

Facilities are required to install control measures that
meet established technology- and water quality-based
effluent limits. They must also develop stormwater
pollution prevention plans. The new permit offers several
    improvements from the previous MSGP, including easy-
    to-understand discharge requirements; electronic filing of
    Notices of Intent and monitoring reports; and several new
    web-based tools.

    Under the Clean Water Act, all facilities that discharge
    pollutants into waters of the United States must obtain a
    National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit.
    The new permit replaces the MSGP issued in 2000.

    More information: www.epa.gov/npdes/stormwater/
 \\atertalk November 2008
Page :

Federal Agencies Plan  to Reduce Marine  Debris
EPA, NOAA, and nine other federal agencies recently
completed a report that will help the agencies and the
Interagency Marine Debris Coordinating Committee
(IMDCC) prevent and reduce marine debris. The report
helps guide agency strategies and discusses marine
debris efforts, recent progress, and innovative ways to
reduce the problem.

Marine debris — which includes plastic grocery bags,
bottles, ropes, tires, soda rings and lost fishing gear -
is found in the ocean and along coasts around the
world. Marine debris threatens public safety, hurts the
economy with costly cleanups and deterred tourism,
and harms and kills marine life such as seals, sea
turtles, sea birds and coral reefs.

The report's recommendations focus on prevention,
response to debris already in the environment, re-
search and development, and coordination. The report
was written by IMDCC at the request of Congress.
See the report at www.ocean.ceq.gov/about/docs/
SIMORJMDCC.pdf. Learn more about EPA's Marine
Debris Program at www.epa.gov/owow/oceans/
                              Get Watertalk Electronically
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                                   quick and easy to sign up. Just go to www.epa.gov/region10.  Click
                                   on A to Z Subject Index, then W for Watertalk. There you will find an
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                                                                           Watertalk November 2008

School projects to help the environment are eligible for awards.
Youth  Award Applications
Due December 31
The deadline for the President's Environmental
Youth Awards (PEYA) applications has been extended
to December 31, 2008.

Since 1971, EPA has sponsored the President's
Environmental Youth Awards. The program recognizes
young people across America for projects which
demonstrate their commitment to the environment.

Projects submitted in the past have covered a wide
range of subject areas.  These include recycling
programs in schools and communities; construction of
nature preserves; major tree planting programs;
videos, skits, and newsletters created by students that
focused on environmental issues; and environmental
science projects.

To be eligible to compete, a student or students,
sponsored by an adult, must submit to their local EPA
regional office evidence of a completed project as well
as a completed  application.  More information can be
found at www.epa.gov/enviroed/peya/index.html.
Or, contact Sally Hantt, EPA, at 206-553-1207, 800-
424-4372 x1207, or hanft.sally@epa.gov.
Recycle  your old cell phone.
  "Plug-In To eCycling" is a voluntary partnership
  between EPA and electronics manufacturers,
  retailers, and service providers to offer consumers
  more opportunities to donate or recycle their used
  electronics, http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/

Look for the Smartway label on new and used
  vehicles when shopping. SmartWay-certified
  vehicles are the best environmental performers,
  and roughly 20 percent of all vehicles qualify as
  SmartWay-certified. http://yosemite.epa.gov/
  opa/admpress.nsf/names/hq 2008-7-

Dispose of trash properly and help keep the
  oceans clean.  When trash is not properly thrown
  away or recycled, it can wash down storm drains
  or blow into streams, rivers, and the ocean. Never
  dump anything down a storm drain, http://
  hq__2008-7-1 _beaches

Get public service safety messages, which can
  help during natural disaster preparation or  recov-
  ery.  Topics include asbestos, protecting children
  from floodwater, mold, drinking water wells, and
  more. Free for re-use and  broadcast.  Listen in
  English or Spanish, http://epa.gov/

Kids! Find the healthiest fish to eat using stories
  and games you can play, http://

Reduce your carbon footprint. Use public trans-
  portation, carpool,  walk, or  bike whenever possible
  to avoid using your car. Learn about greenhouse
  gas emissions  on the road, www.epa.gov/

Have a Greenversation. Ever wanted to tell EPA
  what you thought about an  environmental topic?
  Each week, you have your  chance in the EPA
  blog, Greenversations. Each question is an open-
  ended blog entry.  Share your comments and see
  what others have to say. http://blog.epa.gov
 Watertalk November 2008

Climate  Ready  Estuaries
EPA's Climate Ready Estuaries announces its new
website at www.epa.gov/cre. The website provides
users with information about the importance of coastal
adaptation to climate change and provides a toolkit for
adaptation.  The online toolkit features resources
related to coastal vulnerability, adaptation planning,
smart growth, data and monitoring, and sustainable
financing, serving  a range of needs - from community
members to coastal managers.

The Climate Ready Estuaries program is a partnership
between EPA and the National Estuary Programs
(NEPs).  It addresses climate change in coastal areas.
This effort brings together EPA's Oceans and Coastal
Protection Division and Climate Change Division to
build additional capacity in the NEPs and other coastal
communities as they prepare to adapt to the effects of
climate change.
New Widget Helps  4Tind Your Watershed"
                       mmenlal Protection Agency
                                                                                       H A Z index
  O Widgets
   A widget is a small piece of Web programming code that makes something interesting appear on
   your blog, wiki, or Web page. Information in a widget can feature updated information or let the
   reader do something like a use a search box.

   To add a widget, you must be able to edit your Web page If you need help in adding a widget to
   your Web page, please contact your Webmaster or service provider.
                                      ft bookmark

              Read general information about widgets.
A new Find Your Watershed widget connects to
EPA's Surf Your Watershed database. Now, anyone
with a website, including their own blog, can post the
widget on their own site. The widget, found at http://
epa.gov/widgets/#watershed, supports watershed
education and outreach.
              Easy Macintosh widgets

              If you use an Apple Macintosh computer with operating
              system 10 5 "Leopard" or later, you can use the Safari
              browser to add "web clip" widaets to your dashboard
With this widget, partners can help direct users to
EPA's Surf Your Watershed database. The database
helps people find their watershed, learn about its
health, and connects them with organizations at work
in their watershed.  EPA's first widget, the "environmen-
tal tip of the day," released last spring, was seen
363,000 times in June after it was posted, which is
more than any single page on EPA's website other than
the home page.
                                                                            Water-talk November 2008

EPA's National Home Page  Worth a Visit
Check out EPA's national internet Home Page, which
recently got an overhaul. The changes allow visitors to
find information on the website more easily and quickly.
The Home Page now includes tips on how to help
protect the environment and gives information on
environmental issues in your own zip code. It offers
ways to get involved, resources for research, and a
section for youth. The latest video and audio features
are easy to access. Environmental dialogue is a key
feature of the new Home Page. You can even share
your personal views on environmental issues with
EPA's "Question of the Week" and blog
"Greenversations." Explore the new Home Page at
Website on Water Efficiency Launched
The Alliance for Water Efficiency, a non-profit organiza-
tion that promotes the efficient and sustainable use of
water, has announced the launch of a web-based
Water Efficiency Resource Library. EPA is a pro-
gram partner and funder. The Resource Library is
intended as a one-stop shop for water efficient product
and program information.

Library sections cover residential plumbing and appli-
ances, toilet testing, landscape and irrigation, commer-
cial and industrial water conservation, water rates and
rate structures, water loss control, codes and stan-
dards, drought planning, and  more. Research reports,
published documents, and case studies are included.
Features being added to the site include state summa-
ries and a discussion forum.  See the Resource Library
online at www.allianceforwaterefficiency.org.
 Environmental Ed Resources:
 Gems Online
 Educators, parents, youth leaders, and students can
 find many environmental education resources on
 EPA's web pages. Here are just a few of the many
 gems for teaching and learning:

 Office of Environmental Education:

 Teaching Center:
  www. epa. go v /teachers

 Student Center:

 Environmental Kids Club:
     Visit  Watertalk  online  at  www.
 Watertalk November 2008

         Shoshone-Bannock Tribes Approved for
         '^Treatment in a Similar Manner as a State"

         EPA Region 10 recently approved the Shoshone-
         Bannock Tribes' application for treatment in a similar
         manner as a State  ("TAS") under the Federal Clean
         Water Act. The approval gives the Shoshone Bannock
         Tribes greater authority and responsibility for protecting
         water quality on the Fort Hall Reservation. The TAS
         approval covers all of the water bodies within the
         exterior boundaries of the Fort Hall Indian Reservation.

         According to Elin Miller, EPA regional administrator in
         Seattle, the TAS decision reflects real progress in
         fulfilling one of the Agency's top priorities.

         "Building tribal expertise and increased capacity for
         environmental protection is a top priority for EPA," said
         EPA's Miller. "Our action today not only acknowledges
         the Tribes' demonstrated commitment to protecting
         water quality, but also reflects how seriously we take
         our tribal trust responsibilities in the pursuit of environ-
         mental protection for all."

         EPA's action means that the Tribes can now develop
         their own water quality standards under the Clean
         Water Act. They also can issue water quality certifica-
         tions for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination
         System (NPDES) wastewater discharge permits and
         any other federal permit or license where there is a
         discharge to Reservation waters.

         The Tribes have been working with EPA and the Idaho
         Department of Environmental Quality as the Tribes
         develop their water quality standards. The standards
         will set goals for how clean the reservation waters
         within the Fort Hall Indian Reservation should be.

         For more information, contact
         Rich McAllister, EPA, at
         206-553-8203, 800-424-4372 x8203, or
         Or visit http://yosemite.epa.gov/r10/water.nsf/
Climate Change  Strategy to

Help Manage Water


To help respond to
potential effects of
climate change, a new
strategy focuses on 40
specific actions for the
national water program to
take. EPA's National Water
Program Strategy: Re-
sponse to Climate Change
describes steps for managers to
adapt their clean water, drinking water, and ocean
protection programs.

The water strategy identifies specific response actions
in five areas:
•  Mitigation of greenhouse gases
•  Adaptation to climate change
•  Research related to water and climate change
•  Education on climate change
•  Water program management of climate change

Potential impacts of climate change on water resources
reviewed in the strategy include increases in certain
water pollution problems, changes in availability of
drinking water supplies, and collective impacts on
coastal areas.

EPA water programs are already taking action related
to climate change. These actions include the
WaterSense water efficiency program, green infrastruc-
ture for wet weather management, Climate Ready
Estuaries, and the proposed national  rule for the
injection of carbon dioxide underground.

EPA is working with other federal agencies to coordi-
nate work on climate change and water. Recently, EPA
issued a joint memorandum with the U.S. Departments
of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, and Interior to
describe cooperative efforts on climate change and
water issues.

For more information, visit
                                                    Page 7
                         Watertalk November 2008

Local Citizen  Honored for Puget Sound Work
Drayton Harbor, near Blaine, Washington
EPA recently presented Geoffrey William Menzies
with the President's Volunteer Service Award.
Menzies is being recognized with this national honor
for devoting many hours of community service to
cleaning up and protecting Drayton Harbor and the
greater Puget Sound.

Menzies has been volunteering to clean up Drayton
Harbor for more than 18 years. He was a member of
the Drayton Harbor Watershed Management Commit-
tee from 1991 through 1995, when this group com-
pleted their Watershed Action Plan to control nonpoint
sources of pollution that threatened Drayton Harbor.
He currently volunteers as Chairman of the Drayton
Harbor Shellfish Protection District's Citizen Advisory
Committee, which has been working to restore water
quality and shellfish resources in Drayton Harbor.
Congratulations and thank you for your important work,
Mr. Menzies.

The President's Volunteer Service Award was created
by the President's Council on Service and Civic
Participation. The Award is available to youth ages 14
and under who have completed 50 or more hours of
volunteer service; to individuals 15 and older who have
completed 100 or more hours; and to families or
groups who have completed 200 or more hours. For
details, visit www.presidentialserviceawards.gov.
Change  the  World,  Start with Energy  Star
October marked the fourth annual Energy Star "Change
a Light" Day. So far, more than 1.8 million Americans
have pledged to change at least one light at home to an
Energy Star qualified light. These pledges will save $220
million in energy bills and prevent the release of more
than 3 billion pounds of greenhouse gases. Lighting is
one of the easiest things we can change in our homes
and is the first step in the new pledge to "Change the
World, Start with Energy Star."  EPA is challenging
Americans to take the newly expanded pledge to make
saving energy a bigger part of their lives.

Building on the success of last year's campaign, the new
Energy Star pledge has advice  on other ways to save at
home and at work. Pledge to change one light in your
home to a more energy efficient one, seal and insulate
your home, power-down computers when they're not in
use, program your thermostat to save energy when no
one is home, and choose Energy Star qualified products.
If every American household took the pledge, we would
save more than 110 billion kilowatt hours of electricity and
$18 billion in annual energy costs, while preventing
greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to more than 18
million cars annually.

Energy Star was introduced by EPA in 1992 as a volun-
tary, market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions through energy efficiency. Today, the Energy
Star label can be found on more than 50 different kinds of
products as well as buildings and new homes. Products
that have earned the Energy Star prevent greenhouse
gas emissions by meeting strict energy-efficiency specifi-
cations set by the government. In 2007 alone, Ameri-
cans, with the help of Energy Star, saved $16 billion on
their energy bills while  reducing greenhouse gas emis-
sions equivalent to those from 27 million vehicles.

Take the pledge or get more information at
 Watertalk November 2008

Conserving  Migratory  Bird Habitat
The Migratory Bird Conservation Commission-
made up of agency representatives, including EPA,
and Members of Congress—recently approved more
than $26 million in federal funding. The funding aims to
protect, restore, enhance, and manage more than
135,000 acres of wetlands and associated wildlife
habitats across the U.S. under the North American
Wetlands Conservation Act. (www.fws.gov/
birdhabitat/grants/NAWCA/) The Commission also
approved funding to secure more than 4,400 wetland
acres for seven national wildlife refuges through the
Migratory Bird Conservation Fund.
Ninety-eight percent of the revenue from the sale of
Federal Duck Stamps goes directly into the Migratory
Bird Conservation Fund. Since 1934, the sale of
Federal Duck Stamps has raised more than $700
million to purchase more than 5.2 million acres of
habitat. This year, the Fish and Wildlife Service issued
the 75th Anniversary Federal Duck Stamp
(www.fws.gov/duckstamps/)  and also expended the
one billionth dollar from the conservation fund through
the Service's Small Wetlands Program, which cel-
ebrates its 50th anniversary this year,  (www.fws.gov/
                                                                       Wateruilk November 2008

Beneficial Landscaping
EPA GreenScapes Offers Tools,
Resources for Landscapers  Great and  Small
The GreenScapes program, started by EPA's Office of
Solid Waste, was first set up to address the waste
stream generated from large scale landscapers. It has
evolved to become a diverse, inclusive information
resource for large-scale landscapers and homeowners
who want to "green" their landscaping  practices and
save money. Founded on the waste-busting concepts
of Reduce, Re-use, Recycle, and Re-buy, the
GreenScapes program forms partnerships private and
public to encourage the use of green landscaping
practices. Now in essence, Beneficial  Landscaping
and GreenScaping are synonymous.

The GreenScapes website is "fertile" ground for
learning about the what, why, where, and how's of
   beneficial landscaping practices. It provides useful
   tools, such as the GreenScapes Seasonal Planner for
   homeowners, and cost calculating tools for large
   landscapers on landscape waste, resource conserving
   irrigation, erosion control, decking, and more. There is
   even a climate change tool for assessing waste
   reduction and energy benefits through recycling. Why
   wait? Go to www.epa.gov/greenscapes and learn

   For more information on this and other topics in
   Beneficial Landscaping, contact Elaine Somers at
   206-553-2966, or at somers.elaine@epa.gov, or visit
   our website at www.epa.gov/r10earth/bl.htm.
 Watertalk November 2008
Page 10

November 16-19:
   National Low Impact Development
   Conference, Seattle, WA, Environmental and
   Water Resources Institute of ASCE, http://

November 18-19:
   Idaho Environmental Summit, Boise, Idaho,
   208-882-1444, www.idahosummit.org

December 2:
   PaperCuts Green Office Fair, Seattle, WA,
   Pacific Northwest Pollution Prevention Resource
   Center, www.pprc.org/greenofficefair

December 8-9:
   Northwest Environmental Conference &
   Trade Show, Portland, OR, www.nwec.org/

December 10-11:
   2008 WORC Annual Conference: Building
   Better Soils, Yakima, WA, Washington Organic
   Recycling Council,

December 15-16:
   Growth Management Act Conference, Law
   Seminars International, Seattle, WA, 800-854-
   8009, www.lawseminars.com

January 6-8:
   Water Quality Workshop: Monitoring,
   Assessment, and Management, Boise, ID,
   Linda Smith, Idaho Dept. of Environmental
   Quality, 208-373-0423, www.deq.idaho.gov/

January 15:
   Deadline for contributions to the February
   issue of Watertalk, Andrea Lindsay, Editor,
   206-553-1896, 800-424-4372,

January 27-28:
   Endangered Species Act Seminar, The
   Seminar Group, Seattle, WA, 800-574-4852,

February 2-5:
   Annual Stream Restoration Design
   Symposium, River Restoration Northwest,
   Stevenson, WA, 541-753-3350, www.rrnw.org/

February 8-11:
   Puget Sound Georgia Basin Ecosystem
   Conference, The Future of the Salish Sea: A
   Call to Action, Seattle, WA, http://
                         EPA Region 10:  Who Are We?

                         The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency is to protect human health
                         and the environment. Since 1970, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier
                         environment for the American people. The agency is divided into ten
                         geographical regions. EPA Region 10 serves Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and
                                          Page 11
                         Watertalk November 2008

     U.S. EPA
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     Seattle, Washington 98101-3140

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     November 2008
     Watertalk is published quarterly by the U.S. Environmental Protection j
     Agency, Region 10. Watertalk seeks to be a useful tool for those who protect
     water resources and ecosystems in communities of the Greater Pacific   $
     Northwest, by providing practical resources and relevant agency news.   $*

     You are invited to contribute items for publication. Submittal deadline is the
     15th day of the month before publication.
     Watertalk articles can be used in other publications.  V*^^  '
     Please give credit to Watertalk.            ,      ' >'"

     For mailing list changes, or to contact the editor, call Andrea Lindsay at (206)
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     be interpreted as conveying, official EPA approval, endorsement or recom-
         Alternative formats available upon request. Please call Andrea Lindsay to request
         reasonable accommodation. TTY: 1-800-877-8339.
     Please recycle or share with a friend.
In  This Issue...

The Federal Green

National News

Widgets, Webpages,
  and Water  Efficiency


Environmental Events

And More...