What it Takes to Become Nation’s First “Salmon Safe” Airport

In the Pacific Northwest, we take our salmon very seriously--it is an important species in measuring the health of our watersheds,  a key link in our food supply, a cultural touchstone for many Tribes, and a symbol of the ocean, rivers, and streams that define our beautiful region.

So it’s only appropriate that, if any airport in the country is going to be “Salmon Safe”, Sea-Tac International (Sea-Tac) does it first. The Salmon-Safe label comes from a group called Stewardship Partners, which started the certification program about 15 years ago with wineries and small farms.  

Now, they've expanded their certification program and given Sea-Tac the "Salmon Safe" designation to recognize the airport's work to improve water quality standards well beyond the federal requirements. Learn more about how the airport did it in this KPLU article. 

Aspect is proud to supply environmental and water resource project support to promote this important certification. We’ve partnered directly with Airport water resource staff for over a decade as well as working on projects that benefit the habitat surrounding Sea-Tac. Our work has included on-call surface water monitoring, improving water quality from the Des Moines Creek stormwater detention facility, installing groundwater mitigation wells to maintain baseflows in the Des Moines and Miller/Walker Creek basins, to providing remedial action support to clean up distressed areas around Lora Lake and return them to productive use and improved habitat. Aspect also conducted an airport-wide stormwater infiltration feasibility assessment that helped satisfy the Salmon-Safe criteria associated with low impact development (LID) planning.

Given that Sea-Tac is also America’s fastest growing airport, it's no small feat to keep clean water for healthy fish habitat when you have 42 million+ passengers passing through the gates every year.

We look forward to help continue Sea-Tac's fish-friendly aspirations.