Stream Team to study water quality

By Teresa Herriman, The Courier-Herald

Sharilyn Anderson feels it is in Bonney Lake's best interest to keep the area's lakes clean. The city agrees.

Residents who live near Lake Bonney and Debra Jane Lake and interested community members are invited to a workshop at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Bonney Lake branch of the Pierce County Library.

The workshop will offer insights on lake processes and characteristics, including information specific to lakes Bonney and Debra Jane.

It will also serve as a kick-off for a new lake monitoring program.

The city of Bonney Lake has contracted with the Stream Team, a Pierce County Conservation District program, to conduct a year-long water quality study.

The partnership is a result of concerns expressed by Lake Bonney residents.

Anderson, a Lake Bonney resident and self-described concerned citizen, is one of those who approached city officials. She and her neighbors became alarmed at the amount of oil migrating into the lake soon after the city repaved the road that circles the lake.

"You could see the degradation," she said. "It was very visible."

Anderson said she found city officials responsive.

"The mayor said he would act as an ombudsman for us," she said.

Without a staff environmentalist, the city turned to the Conservation District for assistance, entering into a partnership with the district to monitor the lakes and educate citizens to become stewards of the area's lakes.

Established in 1994, the Pierce County Steam Team works to improve the quality of streams for the benefit of fish, wildlife and people.

The small staff extensively uses volunteers to help monitor water quality and native plant vegetation.

Volunteers will be able to sign up at the workshop.

The Stream Team is working on projects in Tacoma, Lakewood, Sumner, Puyallup and Fife.

Anderson points out that everyone who lives in the basin has a responsibility to maintain the lakes, not just those who live along the shoreline.

"It all drains into the lakes," she said. "We are all interconnected, so we are all in it together. We want to keep all bodies of water as pristine as we can. It just makes good sense."

For more information, call the Steam Team at 253-845-2973.

Teresa Herriman can be reached at

(inset: Water Quality Workshop

Tuesday, April 6, 2004 at 6:30 p.m.

Bonney Lake Library

18501 90th St. E.)

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