Sea Tac Downwinders

ASARCO research project (includes haz-mat sites in the Kent/Des Moines area)




The Mission

An environmental anthropology study to find out what has happened to those that have lived in the Des Moines/Federal Way area during the time Asarco was operational from 1950-1985.

The area west of Pacific Highway South to the Puget Sound has been effected by hazardous materials that exist in the ground and it's streams and lakes from various causes ranging from Asarco, hazardous material dump sites of the past, landfills, and being in the immediate flight path of those who live in the south runway approach to Seattle Tacoma International Airport.

While research is being focused by another group to study the impacts of living in the area whose airspace is used for commercial aircraft purposes, this website focuses on the past sites where hazardous materials were stored at a time when most of the effected was considered rural and unincorporated with very little input from the local community as to it's management as well as the impact from one of the largest EPA Superfund cleanup projects in the country (at the time).

While the area is a major influence to the urbanization of both the cities of Seattle and Tacoma, most of the lead and arsenic still is in the ground today and it's toxic affects have only been brought into the light over the past ten years.