The Port of Skagit takes great pride in our record of stimulating employment and generating commerce in Skagit County while being responsible stewards of the properties they control and manage.
The Port of Skagit’s commitment to the environment reaches all of our properties, including our extensive system of nature trails, the Skagit WIN wetlands program at the business park and airport, the Clean Marina certification at the La Conner Marina, proactive stormwater management that guides our development, installation of solar panels, and historic contamination clean-up at the SWIFT Center.
Stormwater Management Permit
The Port has developed a stormwater management plan for approximately 1,800 acres of Port-owned land, including the Skagit Regional Airport and Bayview Business Park. The stormwater management plan is intended to protect downstream water quality by implementing six program elements:
Public education and outreach
Illicit discharge detection and elimination
Construction site stormwater runoff control
Post construction stormwater management in new development and redevelopment
Pollution prevention/good housekeeping for municipal operations
The Port of Skagit created and implements a program of wetland protection known as Skagit Wetlands and Industrial Negotiations. The Skagit WIN program brought together people with different views of the environment and economic development to plan for wetland protection, while still providing for business and industry on the Port’s property.
There are now approximately 477 acres of high functioning, protected wetlands and wetland buffers at the Bayview Business Park as a result of Skagit WIN. In addition, the Port maintains approximately 20 acres of restored wetlands as the result of a multi-agency wetland mitigation agreement implemented in 2000.
Wetlands are important to the environmental and economic well-being of Skagit County:
Control flooding by acting as natural reservoirs for incoming storm flow
Improve water quality by filtering contaminants
Maintains stream flow by releasing stored water after floods and wet season
Provide wildlife habitat, shelter and food for many different species
Create places for recreation, scientific study, and aesthetic appreciation
Clean Marina Program
La Conner Marina is certified under the Clean Marina Washington Program, a collaborative partnership between marina managers, state agencies, and nonprofits. Together, these partners are leading the way, pioneering new and innovative ways to prevent pollution, reduce waste, and communicate best practices to boaters. Clean Marina Washington provides marina best management practices (BMPs) that are practical and affordable actions that can reduce pollution at the source, but they will only work with everyone’s participation.
The Port of Skagit took ownership of the SWIFT Center, the former Northern State Hospital campus in July 2018 and immediately began to address legacy environmental concerns stemming from hospital operations that began in 1912.
The Port of Skagit and key partners including the Washington State Pollution Liability Insurance Agency (PLIA) , the US Environmental Protection Agency, the Washington State Department of Ecology and others worked to identify and address environmental clean-up projects on the campus.
In the summer of 2019, crews removed soil impacted by leaks from a former underground storage tank and piping adjacent to the maintenance building. PLIA contractors collected soil and groundwater samples to define the depth and spread of contamination. Then, during the summer when groundwater levels are the lowest, they excavated soil containing petroleum and placed clean backfill.
Additional assessment and cleanup work in this and other campus areas are being planned. SWIFT Center clean-up efforts are being funded by grants from PLIA, EPA and the Department of Ecology. Work is being conducted with oversight by the state Department of Ecology.