Columbia River Toxics Reduction Working Group November 2013 Update

Columbia River Toxics Reduction Working Group November 2013 Update

Save the Date! – February 4, 2014 – Columbia River Toxics Reduction Working Group Meeting

The next Columbia River Toxics Reduction Working Group meeting will occur on February 4, 2014, at either Hood River or Cascade Locks, OR. A final location will be determined soon and we are working to provide a webinar to allow remote participation for those who cannot travel to the meeting location. The proposed meeting agenda includes:

-Update on work efforts relating to the Follow up to Sept 2013 Columbia River Fish Advisories – proposed presentation from Corps on their plans for Bonneville Dam clean up
-Coal impacts on Columbia River Basin – report from USGS on research proposal and Columbia Riverkeeper update
-Report from Upper Columbia United Tribes on October 2013 Tribal Environmental Leaders Summit
-WA Children’s Safe Products Act - update from WA Ecology
-Report on ID State Drug Take Back Day and pollution prevention work efforts – IDEQ
-Report from USGS on Columbia River Con-Hab articles
-Report out from 5 Teams
o Sustainable Purchasing/Green Chemistry – OR DEQ
o Chemicals of Emerging Concern - USGS
o Pesticide Stewardship Partnerships – Salmon Safe
o Stormwater – WA Ecology
o Resource Needs and Policy Reform – CRITFC and Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership

Spokane River Regional Toxics Task Force sent a letter to the US EPA on October 23, 2013, discussing the conflicts between the implementation of the Toxics Substances Control Act and the Clean Water Act.
Specifically the letter discusses the need for :
1) Enforcement of the existing Toxics Substances Control Act regulations for inadvertently produced products, and
2) Elimination of the regulatory exclusion for these products.

To view the letter go to:
Click here to view the letter. This notice is also posted on the SRRTTF website at .

OR/WA Issue Joint Fish Advisories for Columbia River – September 23, 2013

On September 23, 2013, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and the Washington Department of Health (WA Health) issued a joint fish advisory for resident fish for the Columbia River from Bonneville Dam 150 miles upstream to McNary Dam. The advisories are based on PCBs and Mercury, which can build up in resident fish such as bass, bluegill, yellow perch, crappie, walleye, carp, catfish, suckers and sturgeon that stay in the area and are exposed over their lifecycles. People who eat too much contaminated fish can suffer negative health effects over time such as damage to organs, the nervous system and reproductive system. The advisories do not affect migratory (traveling) fish species such as salmon, steelhead, American shad and lamprey. The advisories are as follows:

• Bonneville Dam – OHA and WA Health recommend no consumption of any resident fish species taken from Bonneville Dam to Ruckel Creek, one mile upstream from Bonneville Dam.

• Middle Columbia River – OHA and WA Health recommend eating no more than one meal per week – four meals per month – of any resident fish species taken from the river between Ruckel Creek and McNary Dam, a roughly 150-mile stretch of the river.

WA Ecology Job Opportunity

The Reducing Toxic Threats Section at Ecology is currently recruiting for a senior policy expert to develop policies, regulations and plans to reduce toxic threats. The position will develop new and innovative approaches to address toxics and work with lots of external stakeholders, including global companies, trade associations, legislators, NGOs, academics, and other government agencies. The position will also lead the agency in identifying priority chemicals of concern. The work of this position is very interrelated to the issues addressed by the Toxics Reduction Strategy workgroup.

See the full job announcement here:

EPA Region 10 PCB Training for Handlers of Used Oil – December 9, 2014, Seattle, WA, EPA Region 10 Offices

The US EPA Region 10 PCB Program will provide PCB training for handlers of used oil, at the EPA office in Seattle on the 15th floor. This course will lay out all the details for your facility to maintain compliance with the PCB regulations while recycling used oil.
A limited number of free spots are available, so register early! Registration deadline is November 18, 2013.
If you receive used oil from a third party, this course is for you.
You will learn:
·How to maintain compliance with labeling, manifesting, record keeping, storage and disposal for used oil with PCBs.
·How to identify PCB contamination to prevent co-mingling with un-contaminated oil.
·Sample collection and analytical methods and associated costs.
·What to do if you unexpectedly receive PCB contaminated oil.
·Best management practices to avoid inadvertently accepting PCB contaminated oil from a third party

Cost and Registration Details
Typically the course costs $1,195-$1,500 per person. EPA is offering it free to the first 20 who register and $750 per person thereafter until the room reaches capacity. To register, please provide your name, e-mail, phone number, organization, position title, number of attendees (with their names, phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and position titles) by November, 18 to: Michelle Mullin, EPA Region 10 PCB Coordinator ,, 206-553-1616.
This course is in high demand and we may receive more registrations than possible to support. The audience is intended for regulators and facility environmental managers, not “consultants”. We will make every effort to assure that at least one representative from each organization that registers is afforded the opportunity to attend. Additional details including transportation directions and an agenda will follow registration.

Western Integrated Pest Management Center Request for Applications (RFA) for “Western IPM Center 2014 Competitive Grant Programs

The Western Integrated Pest Management Center is releasing a Request for Applications (RFA) for “Western IPM Center 2014 Competitive Grant Programs.” Programs available in this RFA include (A) Project Initiation; (B) IPM Work Groups; (C) Outreach and Implementation; and (D) IPM Planning Documents. Applications are due at 5 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on Wednesday, December 18, 2013. This RFA may be accessed at Applications must be submitted electronically and all components must be in portable document format (PDF). Applicants will have to register at prior to submitting a proposal to download the documents that applicants are required to use for submissions. Directions are included on what to submit, format, length restrictions, due date, and other requirements. If you encounter any problems or have questions regarding this process or the RFA, please contact Jim Farrar at (530) 754-8378 or

Metro Nature in Neighborhoods conservation education grants available for projects that connect people with nature

Small grants up to $25,000 and large grants up to $100,000 will support partnerships in the Portland metropolitan area that connect communities with nature. A wide variety of projects can fit the bill, from nature education for school-aged children in local natural areas to job skill development for nature-based careers to implementation of region-wide conservation education initiatives. Conservation education programs that benefit Metro-area residents are eligible. Individuals, community groups, businesses, neighborhoods, nonprofits, schools and school groups, government agencies, faith groups and service groups with nonprofit or other tax-exempt status can all apply. The grant deadline is Jan. 14, 2014 at Finalists will be invited to submit a detailed application and, in May, the Metro Council will award about $700,000 to conservation education projects across the region. Funding for Nature in Neighborhoods grants more than doubled this year, due to voter approval of Metro’s parks and natural areas levy in May. The levy includes $3.7 million during the next five years to support community partnerships. A grant workshop will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 14 at Metro Regional Center, 600 NE Grand Ave. in Portland. For more information Contact Crista Gardner at or visit

The Whole Watershed Restoration Initiative (WWRI) is pleased to announce its 2014 Request for Proposals (RFP) for community-based habitat restoration projects in Oregon and Washington.

The WWRI is a public-private partnership between Ecotrust, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The partnership focuses on restoring the major ecological processes critical to the natural function of entire watersheds. The WWRI directs funds and resources to select watersheds and restoration activities that provide the greatest opportunity for the recovery of native, anadromous salmon populations across land ownerships.

Approximately $1.2 million will be available in the 2014 funding cycle for projects within the WWRI's Priority Basins. Please note that some changes have been made to geographic priorities, and are described in the RFP. The deadline for applications is January 9th, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. PST and awards will be announced in late March 2014.

To learn more about eligibility and to download the RFP and application form, visit the WWRI website at Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the WWRI to discuss projects prior to submitting proposals. Please direct questions to Kate Carone, (503) 467-0814,