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The Puyallup Delta is one of the two most degraded delta ecosystems in Puget Sound.
Nearshore Strategies Data Report
Cereghino et al 2012 completed a soundwide analysis to identify and describe river delta sites in Puget Sounds as part of a nearshore ecosystem restoration strategy (using remote sensing data c. 2000-2006). The following narrative of this delta site was developed to support distribution and use of analysis results:
- The Puyallup Delta in the South Central Sub-basin historically contained 2,923 acres of vegetated wetland along a 46 km shoreline. The delta receives flow from a 251,672 square kilometer watershed. These characteristics make this system the 7th largest delta out of 16 systems in Puget Sound.
- Simenstad et al 2011 found that this system had lost 100% of its vegetated tidal wetlands, and 100% of its shoreline length. Of the remaining shoreline, 100% shows some evidence of infrastructure development. In the surrounding uplands, 99% of land is estimated to have greater than 10% impervious surface. Across the watershed, 64% of land is estimated to have greater than 10% impervious surface. Based on these paramters, the site was given a degradation score of 74 out of 100, making it the 2th most degraded delta in Puget Sound. It faces a low risk of future development locally, and a high risk of development across the watershed. Approximately 43% of the watershed is currently impounded behind dams.
- The Commencement Bay Natural Resource Trustees are responsible for a suite of restoration actions and studies funded through settlements resulting from natural resources damage assessment claims under CERCLA.
- The City of Tacoma has completed multiple restoration actions as part of settlements with the Commencement Bay Natural Resource Trustees
- Citizens for a Healthy Bay and Friends of the Hylebos Wetlands have provided assistance to multiple restoration sites.
- The Port of Tacoma is responsible for multiple restoration actions prompted by its mitigation requirements.
- The White River spring Chinook are the last spring Chinook run in South Puget Sound, and reflect a unique component of Puget Sound Chinook genetic heritage.
- The Puyallup Tribe of Indians has been actively involved in restoration, and have lived here since time immemorial.
- Earthcorps has been awarded a contract by the Commencement Bay Natural Resource Trustees to manage long term stewardship of restoration sites developed under NRDA