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  • South Tacoma Groundwater Protection District

    Businesses do their part to protect Tacoma’s drinking water.

    We help protect the City of Tacoma’s drinking water. South Tacoma Groundwater Protection District (STGPD) sits above the South Tacoma aquifer. Groundwater typically supplies about 5% of Tacoma’s water in the summer and supplements the supply from the Green River at other times of the year. Groundwater from this aquifer could supply up to 40% of Tacoma’s drinking water.

    Tacoma Water has the most up to date information on the health and supply of our drinking water.

    What is groundwater?

    Groundwater is water found underground in the cracks and spaces in the soil, sand and rock. Aquifers, where groundwater is stored, are typically made up of sand, sandstone or fractured rock. Water move through the spaces between these materials. Groundwater supplies are replenished or recharged by precipitation that seeps into the ground. This is called infiltration.

    What is stormwater?

    Precipitation that runs along the ground surface. Stormwater can infiltrate the ground or flow through storm systems. It can carry contaminants into groundwater, streams, lakes or oceans. Some common contaminants include auto fluids, sediment, metals, soaps and degreasers.

    Reduce pollution and costly clean up.

    We work with businesses to prevent chemicals from entering soil and water. We regulate businesses with:

    • Aboveground storage tanks.
    • Underground storage tanks.
    • Hazardous substances at regulated quantities (greater than 220 pounds).
    • Stormwater infiltration facilities.

    We do not regulate private homes.

    Check out this video to learn more.

    Infiltration within the STGPD.

    Pollution occurs when water picks up contaminants along the ground surface. If infiltration systems are not properly constructed or maintained, polluted water could reach our drinking water aquifer. We work with the City of Tacoma to properly construct infiltration systems. We inspect these systems to ensure they are properly maintained.

    How do I get a permit?

    Submit a complete application with fee. We will inspect your facility and issue a permit.

    See our FAQs and fee schedule for more information.

    How often will the Health Department inspect my business?

    We inspect permitted facilities every other year. If you don’t comply or have large quantities of hazardous substances, we may inspect your business more often.

    What are the regulations?

    The rules and guidelines we follow to regulate how businesses manage their hazardous substances and infiltration systems.

    Questions?

    Contact us at stgpd@tpchd.org. Or call Kelsie Lane (253) 649-1850 for more information.

    Resources