Photo by K. Moran, 2014

Lake Whatcom is a vital resource, providing drinking water, recreation and wildlife habitat to our community. The City of Bellingham, Whatcom County, and the Lake Whatcom Water and Sewer District formed the Lake Whatcom Management Program in 1998 to coordinate programs and projects that restore, protect and preserve Lake Whatcom and its surrounding watershed.

Photo by T. Ward, 2015

Our Progress

Learn more about program goals and actions. Track our progress.

Photo by G. Mednick, 2019

Get Involved

Learn more about actions you can take to help prevent pollution and protect Lake Whatcom.

Photo by City of Bellingham, 2018

What's New

Learn more about Lake Whatcom Management Program news, meetings, and events.

Septic Maintenance Rebates Available in the Lake Whatcom Watershed

Did you know septic system evaluations are required every 1 or 3 years, depending on the type of system you have? Performing regular evaluations and maintenance now can save you money in the long run.

We can help reduce the cost of your evaluation. Take advantage of our Septic Maintenance Rebate Program, and you could get up to $200 back! Certain restrictions and requirements apply, including completion of a free training. Visit the website, or call Molly Burke at (360)778-6267 for more info.

Posted November 30, 2021

Lake Whatcom Policy Group Meeting December 1, 2021

The Lake Whatcom Policy Group will hold a virtual meeting on Wednesday, December 1 at 3:00 p.m. This meeting is a public meeting. To attend, use the link and instructions provided on the meeting agenda.

Posted November 24, 2021

Volunteer to help protect Lake Whatcom

Do you live, work, or play in the Lake Whatcom watershed? To serve the interests of the community and protect watershed health, we have developed some exciting volunteer opportunities. We are currently offering three ways to get involved:

  1. Watershed Watchers: Activities include reporting flooding, erosion, and pollution problems, picking up litter with a provided kit, and/or keeping storm drains free of debris.

  2. Photo Sharing: Share your photos of Lake Whatcom, the surrounding forests and trails, and the people and wildlife that call this beautiful place home.

  3. Pet Waste Ambassador: help us spread the message that picking up after your pet is the right thing to do!

Visit our website to learn more. If you’re interested, scroll down and fill out the volunteer interest form. We will get back to you with more information.

Posted November 22, 2021

Manage your leaves to protect our water

Leaves and other yard debris can pollute our water and cause flooding when managed incorrectly. Instead of piling debris where it may leach excess nutrients or block drainage, try one of the following options:

  • Use FoodPlus!

  • Bring them to a local disposal service

  • If composting at home, use a covered and contained compost system

If you can do so safely, please clear storm drains of leaves and debris or report blocked drains:

  • Whatcom County: (360) 778-6400

  • City of Bellingham: (360) 778-7979 or report online at

Posted: November 19, 2021

Keep current with Lake Whatcom

Interested in learning about water quality protection and stewardship opportunities in the Lake Whatcom watershed? Subscribe to the Lake Whatcom Lowdown, a quarterly e-newsletter with updates about Lake Whatcom protection efforts. Click here to subscribe. View the October edition and other past issues at our Resources Page.

Posted: November 1, 2021