PLU, Pierce County host watershed conference this week

What does the future hold for Pierce County's watersheds? Experts and citizens will talk about current conditions and future activities...

What does the future hold for Pierce County’s watersheds? Experts and citizens will talk about current conditions and future activities at a series of October conferences.

The Chambers-Clover Creek Watershed Conference is Oct. 5-6 at Pacific Lutheran University. Presentation topics include the Chambers-Clover Creek Watershed’s geologic and glacial history, a model for groundwater management, and lake water quality, including toxic algae conditions. The conference will also include a dedication ceremony of the Naches Trail Preserve.

At the Puyallup River Watershed Low-Impact Development Conference set for Oct. 12 at Pierce College’s Puyallup campus, Puyallup Watershed managers and local officials in east Pierce County will present low-impact development techniques for the area’s growing population. Speakers will also share information about model ordinances, the benefits of low-impact development, rain gardens, the local Built Green Program, and construction-related topics such as site design, erosion and LID integration.

The third conference is the Low-Impact Development Conference for Developers on Oct. 18 at Tacoma’s La Quinta Inn. The workshop will discuss how developers, contractors, permit reviewers and inspectors can implement LID.

“Our goal is to share information and give people a better understanding of watershed issues in Pierce County,” said Dan Wrye, Watershed Services manager, Pierce County Public Works and Utilities. “We look forward to discussion among local government and resource agency staff, academics, elected officials and the general public.”

A watershed is a geographic region that drains water into a river, stream or body of water. The Puyallup River watershed covers about 1,052 square miles. The Chambers-Clover Creek watershed covers 144 square miles in urban Pierce County.

Local, state and federal agencies are sponsoring and participating in both conferences. Attendees will be encouraged to contribute their comments and ideas through panel discussions and question-and-answer sessions.

Conference sponsors include Pierce County Public Works and Utilities, Water Programs Division; Chambers-Clover Creek Watershed Council; Puyallup River Watershed Council; Washington State Department of Ecology; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; U.S. Geological Survey; and Master Builders Association of Washington.

For more information about the watershed conferences, contact Melissa Paulson at 253-798-4686, or go online to http://www.piercecountywa.org/wpconf .

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