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Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Avenue, Room 1000, Portland, OR 97204

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Where and What is the Portland Harbor Superfund Site?

Portland Harbor mapPortland Harbor has a long history of shipping, industrial, and commercial activity because of its key location on the Willamette River. This area of the river also has historical, natural and cultural resource significance.

A joint U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) study in 1997 showed that river sediments in Portland Harbor are contaminated with DDT and other pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and petroleum. Based on this information, EPA designated Portland Harbor as a Superfund Site in December 2000.

This is an unusually complicated Superfund site, one of the most complex in the EPA Superfund program. The site:

  • Covers 10 miles of river from the southern end of Sauvie Island to just past the Fremont Bridge
  • Has been subject to decades of historical contamination with a variety of pollutants
  • Involves numerous potentially responsible parties
  • Has endangered species act (ESA) considerations
  • Is culturally significant to six Native American tribes.

City of Portland's Role

How the City of Portland is involved in the Portland Harbor Superfund investigation

More Portland Harbor Information

How to learn more about the Portland Harbor Superfund site