|Groundwater Protection Videos|
The City of Olympia gets 100 percent of its drinking water from groundwater. Therefore, we take our job of protecting the quality and quantity of groundwater very seriously. Activities on the surface of the land have the potential to contaminate and deplete our groundwater.
The following links provide information about the City's Groundwater Protection Program, and our drinking water sources in Olympia.
Groundwater Protection - An Introduction
The City of Olympia values our clean, safe drinking water. Learn more about our groundwater protection program.
Aquifers and Groundwater
Learn what an aquifer is and how scientists study groundwater.
Groundwater Protection Areas
Learn how and why Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection Areas (DWPAs) are created. Find out if you live within one of Olympia's DWPAs.
Risks to Groundwater
What do underground storage tanks, transportation spills, pesticide and fertilizer application, and stormwater runoff have in common? All these things, and more, are risks to Olympia's drinking water quality.
- Groundwater Contamination Graphic : Visual model of how groundwater can be contaminated.
- Water Wise Lawn Fertilizing : Lawn fertilizers are one of the primary sources of nitrate contamination in groundwater within our area. This page provides information on recommended lawn fertilizers and application practices that will protect groundwater.
Your Landscape Matters
You can help protect our groundwater and drinking water by using native and drought-tolerant plants and fostering a sustainable landscape. Whether you're a homeowner, renter, landlord, or developer, review our landscape plans and plant lists and learn more about establishing, caring for, and watering your landscape to help protect groundwater. Our plans were designed to meet Drinking Water Protection Area requirements for new development and can be used for small and large-scale projects.
Rules for New Development
This page outlines requirements for new developments within the City of Olympia that lie within a Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection Area. Review this information to see if your proposal will need to meet the requirements of Olympia Municipal Code Chapter 18.32.200 through 18.32.240.
Code and Boundary Updates
In July 2009, the Olympia City Council adopted changes to the Olympia Municipal Code related to Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection which were incorporated in the City's 2009-2014 Water System Plan. The Washington State Department of Health, which officially updated the boundaries for Olympia's Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection Areas, approved the updates in June 2010. Final City Council approval occured in July 2010. This page provides an overview of those Code and Boundary changes.
Publications and Plans
These technical and planning publications provide essential information on the hydrogeology and risks to groundwater in the City's Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection Areas.
Questions and Answers
This page provides answers to commonly asked questions from residents who live within Drinking Water (Wellhead) Protection Areas.
Learn more about groundwater terminology by referring to the definitions on this page.
Need More Information?
Contact Donna Buxton at 360.753.8793, or send an e-mail.