Washington Water Trust

Working to restore our state's rivers and streams.

Dungeness Water Exchange

The Dungeness River is the lifeblood of the Dungeness Valley, providing water for fish, for farms and for families. But now the river is running low. The Dungeness Water Exchange was created through an historic collaboration between Clallam County, Department of Ecology, the Dungeness Water Users Association, the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe, City of Sequim, Clallam PUD No.1, Clallam Conservation District, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and Washington Water Trust. 

These varied interests all recognize the importance of the Dungeness River. They created the Water Exchange to allow builders, homeowners and farmers to get the water they need to protect their investments while protecting the river for future generations. Put simply, the Exchange seeks to ensure that we put as much water back into the river as we take out.

The Dungeness Water Exchange has two key programs: restoration and mitigation
  • Mitigation: The Exchange mitigation program is a “water bank” that allows new water users to purchase a certificate that meets state requirements for protecting the Dungeness River. The money raised by the certificates will go to purchase water from willing sellers. That water will go back into the river instead of being used for out of stream needs. The Exchange balances the need for water today with the need for water tomorrow and creates certainty for farmers and homeowners so they know they have enough supply to meet their basic needs. 
  • Restoration: The Exchange restoration program uses state and federal dollars to replenish local groundwater supplies and restore flows to the river to improve the overall ecological health of the watershed.
Indoor and Outdoor water mitigation packages
The Exchange offers a variety of water mitigation packages. DWE has three indoor and outdoor mitigation packages, described in the table below. The indoor-only mitigation package is for “domestic” purposes only, as defined in the Rule.  An outdoor mitigation package reflects the maximum amount of water that you agree to use on your property from your permit-exempt well. Indoor-only packages are available without geographic restrictions. However, packages with outdoor use may be unavailable, depending on the location of the property. Review this map to find out where outdoor mitigation packages are unavailable, and read more on the Clallam County Permitting Office's Dungeness Water Rule webpage. Please note that exterior water use with Basic outdoor and Extended Outdoor packages is limited to the irrigation season (April 15- September 15). 

The amount of outdoor use is based on the amount of irrigation required for turf grass according to the Washington Irrigation Guide (20.80 inches/year). A larger amount of landscaping or garden area may be possible with the same number of gallons per day.

Stockwater mitigation packages
DWE also offer three sizes of stockwater mitigation packages. The three tiers of stockwater mitigation are described in the table below.  Learn more by reading the announcement letter.

The Dungeness Water Exchange is a project developed in collaboration with local leaders and the Department of Ecology, which is charged with maintaining water quantity in all the state’s rivers and streams. Washington Water Trust was selected to manage the Dungeness Water Exchange because of its experience and expertise in running similar programs all across the state. We are all excited and optimistic that the Exchange signals a new era of collaboration along the Dungeness that allows members of community to help restore the river that has served them well for so many years.

Frequently Asked Questions
View online or download PDF here.

For more information about the Dungeness Water Exchange contact Emily Dick, Project Manager, (O):206.675.1585 x100, (C):206.914.9282, emily@washingtonwatertrust.org or Jason Hatch, Project Manager, (O):206.675.1585 x103, (C):360.328.3166, jhatch@washingtonwatertrust.org