If you could walk to the Pacific Ocean from Snohomish County, how long would it take to get there?

February 10, 2020 The Herald

Meth, tire rubber among new pollutants found in Puget Sound

Ocean water in Snohomish County is less polluted than other urban sites in Puget Sound, despite over 60 new chemicals scientists tracked in and around Possession Sound — including trace amounts of methamphetamine.”

Fish and wildlife are suffering because of urban pollution,” James said.

Urban pollution? We’ll get back to that.

“Now, the scientists are hoping to find a link between contamination in the Sound and land use, James said.”

One link might be operating sewage treatment facilities that are sending unsafe product into local waters.


Island County

It seems understandable that recent rains could cause temporary problems.

Lets take a look back to the driest time of the year, and what was going on away from urban centers, and away from the ocean:

Image above: Washington State Dept. of Health status updated Sept. 20th, 2019.

North side of Penn Cove at Monroe Landing

“This beach is within the closure area for a sewage treatment plant outfall and is unsafe for recreational shellfish harvesting.”

Source: WDFW

Is the sewage treatment plant sending unsafe product into Penn Cove?

Reporting on this topic appears to be completely off limits to the press.


Local water quality

Back in 2017, Island County Public Health posted a sign at the Coupeville Wharf about restrictions on recreational shellfish harvesting.

Several Island County beaches are now closed for recreational shellfish harvest because of sewage treatment outfall.

Sewage treatment outfall. Not stormwater.

This appears to be a routine/ongoing situation.

View the Washington State Department of Health beach list here.


One or more sewage treatment plants are sending unsafe product into Penn Cove?


Love to see newspeople provide updated reporting on this:

“This beach is within the closure area for a sewage treatment plant outfall and is unsafe for recreational shellfish harvesting.”

Source: WDFW


Went out to take a look

I saw no warning signs or urban centers on 5/21/19 at Monroe Landing.

Image below taken on a March 24, 2019 Penn Cove site visit.

WDFW has posted a permanent sign indicating a dark shaded area in the eastern part of Penn Cove.

Interesting that the part of the cove farthest from open waters is the part where the water is cleaner.

This sign remains in place even during the driest months of the year:

Stewardship is a priority:

Sign below educates the public on local waters.

Saratoga Passage Marine Stewardship Area

Has there ever been a news story to inform the public on the Saratoga Passage Marine Stewardship Area?

Looks like a pretty big area.

I’d be more interested in paying (again) for a local paper subscription if there was more in the way of investigative reporting & newspeople asking questions.

Lack of News Reporting Hurts Newspaper Subscriptions?

More here:


Saratoga Passage Marine Stewardship Area – Any News Coverage?

Proper Geographic Names



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The Pacific Coast at Ruby Beach