Resource Protection


Programs and Projects:






Latest STA TRP News

Results of STA Starrigavan Estuary Contaminant Sampling

After several years of work, the Sitka Tribe of Alaska recently received results of sediment and shellfish sampling collected in Summer 2020 in Starrigavan Bay. The sediment samples were mostly sand and gravel, and the shellfish samples targeted clams and cockles commonly harvested by locals.  Samples were tested for contaminants, which are polluting or poisonous substances that make something impure. [more]


Brownfields Educational Articles

Antifouling Paint can be Foul

STA Interns and Site Surveys

Persistent Organic Pollutants


STA Interactive Contaminated Sites Map

Click map to explore contaminated sites in the Sheet’ka Kwaan (Sitka area):
Please click the double-arrow for Map Legend

What is a Brownsfield? 
Brownfields are sites where use or development is complicated by the presence or potential presence of hazardous substances or contaminants. Examples of brownfields include illegal dumps, petroleum spills, structures with lead paint or asbestos, former industrial areas, or abandoned mines. A Brownfield needs to have the potential to be redeveloped or reused. Such redevelopment or reuse could be a community meeting hall, recreational center, or using the property for a community garden, developing affordable housing, or returning the site back to its traditional subsistence use.

STA's Brownsfields/TRP
STA's Brownfields/ Tribal Response Program (better known as the TRP) is focused on protecting and restoring subsistence resource habitat. STA has conducted site visits and collected data to better characterize and prioritize contaminated sites. STA is collaborating with other Tribes, the US EPA, the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, the US Forest Service, and others to work on contaminated sites in the Sitka area and to problem solve solutions for testing and cleanup.

Our current priorities are:


  • Protecting subsistence resource habitat from degradation
  • Testing sites for contaminants where traditional harvesting occurs
  • Maintaining and updating an inventory of potentially contaminated sites
  • Public outreach of what constitutes a brownfield
  • Investigating potential cleanup projects
  • Participating in oil spill response with the Southeast Subregion Response group

Currently, STA is investigating several sites including the Chichagof Mine at Klag Bay, sediments at Starrigavan Bay, and dioxins at Sawmill Cove.

Example of brownfield sites in the Sitka area: The old Chichagof Mine at Klag Bay has abandoned mine facilities, several immense tailings piles leaching contaminants into uplands and water, distressed vegetation, and contaminated shellfish and sediment.

Public Record
Public Record of Brownfield sites (sites with contamination) that have had actions or will have actions in the next year within the Sitka area and the traditional Territory of Sitka Tribe of Alaska. “The Public Record [will] maintain, update not less than annually, and make available to the public a record of sites, by name and location, at which response actions have been completed in the previous year and are planned to be addressed under the Tribe and State program that specifically governs response actions for the protection of public health and the environment in the upcoming year.”

Brownfields Public Record – September 2022

Information found on the Public Record is from the DEC Contaminated Sites Database and more detailed information can be found on the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation Website.

Submitting a Site to STA Inventory

If anyone is concerned about a potentially contaminated site and wants it on STA’s Brownfield Inventory, please click on the link below to report to STA and fill out the information the best that you can. The more detailed information the better we can determine eligibility for brownfield services.

Contaminated Site Reporting Form

**If you know of a spill that has occurred recently, you are required to report it to the Alaska Department of Environmental Control (ADEC) at 907-465-5340 and the National Response Center at  1-800-424-8802. For more information, please see**


Brownfield Links

U.S. EPA Brownfield Homepage:

U.S. EPA Land Revitalization Homepage:

Alaska DEC Brownfields Homepage:


Center for Creative Land Recycling Website


Brownfield FAQs

Contact Information

If you have any questions about the STA Brownfields Program or if you have a concern about a contaminated site, please email Elizabeth at or call (907) 738-3165.

This project has been funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under assistance agreement RP-01J05306 to Sitka Tribe of Alaska. The contents of this document do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency, nor does the EPA endorse trade names or recommend the use of commercial products mentioned in this document.