Ecology Department approves money to address groundwater nitrate contamination in Yakima County

YAKIMA — The Washington state Department of Ecology has approved about $300,000 to help Yakima County develop a groundwater management program to address nitrate contamination.

State and federal officials have been investigating nitrate contamination in the Yakima Valley since the Yakima Herald-Republic newspaper uncovered the problem in a series of stories in October 2008. Potential causes include application of nitrogen-rich fertilizers, manure and leaking septic systems.

The Ecology Department announced Monday that Director Ted Sturdevant had issued an order authorizing the county to develop the program. He also announced the startup funding in a letter to county commissioners.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last year found 21 percent of 337 wells sampled for nitrates in the lower Yakima Valley were at levels greater than federal drinking standards.

More in Local News

Everett district relents on eminent domain moving expenses

Homeowners near Bothell still must be out by April to make way for a planned new high school.

Their grown children died, but state law won’t let them sue

Families are seeking a change in the state’s limiting wrongful-death law.

Officials rule train-pedestrian death an accident

The 37-year-old man was trying to move off the tracks when the train hit him, police say.

Ex-Monroe cop re-arrested after losing sex crime case appeal

He was sentenced to 14 months in prison but was free while trying to get his conviction overturned.

Marysville hit-and-run leaves man with broken bones

The state patrol has asked for help solving an increasing number of hit-and-run cases in the state.

Everett man killed at bar had criminal history, gang ties

A bar employee reportedly shot Matalepuna Malu, 29, whose street name was “June Bug.”

Front Porch

EVENTS Autoharpist in Everett Folksinger, storyteller and autoharp virtuoso Adam Miller returns… Continue reading

Shock from WSU suicide ripples through Snohomish County

Roughly 1 in 10 seniors, sophomores and 8th-graders said they had attempted to take their own lives.

$1,000 reward for info on who killed an eagle near Snohomish

After being shot, the raptor was treated at the Sarvey Wildlife Center but died overnight.

Most Read