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EPA Unveils Web-based Ecosystem Indicators for Puget Sound and Georgia Basin

Release Date: 10/26/2006
Contact Information: Michael Rylko, (206) 553-4014, rylko.michael@epa.gov Tony Brown, (206) 553-1203, brown.anthony@epa.gov

(Seattle, WA – Oct. 26, 2006) As part of an ongoing international effort to restore and protect the Puget Sound Georgia Basin, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the launch of an online indicators report that will provide local citizens, businesses, organizations and governments information about the current health of the ecosystem.

The Puget Sound Georgia Basin Ecosystem Indicators (Indicators) Report is composed of nine environmental indicators specific to this ecosystem: Population Health, Urbanization and Forest Change, Solid Waste and Recycling, River, Stream and Lake Quality, Shellfish, Air Quality, Marine Species at Risk, Toxics in Harbor Seals and Marine Water Quality. Of the nine indicators, five are showing declining conditions and four are neutral. None are showing improvement.

According to Tom Eaton, EPA’s Washington Operations Office Director, the Indicators Report synthesizes data from many partners and establishes a baseline from which we can measure either progress….or continued decline.

“We have an unprecedented opportunity and responsibility to restore and protect the Puget Sound Georgia Basin ecosystem,” Eaton said. “This report and website are important and vivid tools to help both citizens and decisions makers better understand the connections between our behavior and its effect on the Puget Sound Georgia Basin Ecosystem.”

The Indicators build on an initial Puget Sound Georgia Basin ecosystem indicators report produced in 2002. The numerous contributors for both reports include EPA, Environment Canada, Canada Department of Fisheries and Oceans, the Georgia Basin Action Plan, BC Ministry of Environment, BC Ministry of Community Services, Puget Sound Action Team, Washington State Department of Ecology, Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, and many local government entities and non-governmental organizations.

To read the indicator report, visit: http://www.epa.gov/region10/psgb/indicators/
For more information on the report contributors, visit: http://www.epa.gov/region10/psgb/indicators/acknowledgements/

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