Brownfields - Tribal Response Program
The Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe received a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to start a Tribal Response Program. The goal of this program is to assess and clean up properties that are contaminated, polluted or have other hazardous substances and prevent future contamination. Properties such as these are called brownfields sites, originating from the Brownfields Revitalization Act which made funding available to create state and tribal response programs. Many brownfield sites exist on reservations and in usual and accustomed hunting and fishing grounds, leftover from industrial and municipal activities. Types of brownfields sites can vary from an old mill site, dumps, contaminated buildings or meth labs.
A list of potential brownfields sites has been created through research and interviewing both technical professionals and community members. This list is subject to change as new information is found and updated as work on sites progress. Additional grants are obtained to study and clean up these sites. It is important to note that one of the major aspects of the Brownfields Program is to redevelop or reuse cleaned property for economical value. In many areas, large scale redevelopment, such as condos and business parks, are built on cleaned brownfields sites. The Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe is more interested in light reuse, which focuses on allowing beneficial use of a site while protecting and enhancing natural resources. Fortunately, for tribes, simply returning land back to culturally beneficial uses, such as shellfish harvesting, qualifies as reuse. On this website, you will be able to access the Public Record that contains our list of potentially contaminated sites and related information.