In 1999, Chinook salmon in the waters of Puget Sound were listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The Port of Bellingham, working in collaboration with the Bellingham Bay Action Team (a multi-agency task force), has identified the highest-priority habitat restoration areas in Bellingham Bay. The Port is helping Puget Sound salmon recovery efforts by:
Building intertidal mudflats, which offer food and protection to young salmon
Improving nearshore connectivity
Removing creosote pilings and unnecessary over-water structures
Restoring several miles of urban shoreline
Specific Port of Bellingham Habitat Restoration Projects
In 2005, the Marine Park Beach Restoration Project removed 5,600 tons of concrete rubble and rock from the shoreline at the foot of Harris Ave in Fairhaven, and replaced it with a new 300-foot wide, gently sloping sand and cobble beach. This project reconnected tideflats and eelgrass beds, which are critical habitats for salmon recovery.