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Freshwater

We set state standards for how clean and healthy fresh water bodies need to be. The standards protect waters for the many benefits they provide, like drinking, swimming, recreation, use by industries, and as a healthy habitat for salmon, shellfish, and wildlife. Washington has various funding programs to help communities deal with water pollution problems.

Surface water quality standards

The surface water quality standards are the backbone for water quality protection in Washington. We use them as a foundation to keep water clean and healthy. Pollution limits in water quality permits are based on the standards. Municipalities, industries, and other water dischargers are required to have water quality permits to operate.

Freshwater algae control program

Our freshwater algae control program provides local governments with resources to:

  • Help identify toxic algae problems in freshwater.
  • Grant funds to help pay for lake management projects.