Feb 19, 1999 Senator Karen Fraser Chair, Committee on Environmental Quality and Water Resources PO Box 40482 Olympia WA 98504-0482 Senator Fraser; Washington Environmental Council is concerned that the Washington Fertilizer Act of 1998 did nothing to address the unconscionable practice of adding dioxin to commercial produced fertilizer. In its Dioxin Reassessment Document, the federal EPA estimates that average levels of dioxin in ALL Americans is "at or approaching levels" where we can expect to see a variety of dioxin induced health effects. Immunosupression, reproductive effects, heart disease, and cancer have all been linked to dioxin exposure. Commercially produced fertilizer available to the public may be purchased for the purpose of home gardening. We understand the technicality that dioxin is not taken up into growing plants. However we also understand the practical reality and the aesthetic of home gardening, and for this reason find the practice of adding dioxins to fertilizer which may be used for home gardening to be not only a very real public health threat, but also to be morally questionable. Dioxin tainted fertilizer used by commercial farmers may also have health effects due to exposure or inhalation of soil by growers, as well as residual soil adhering to the plant surface which is then sold to markets and the public. For these reasons we strongly support SB5809, which would prohibit wastes containing dioxin from being included in fertilizer ingredients. We are very grateful that you have introduced this bill into the Senate. Sincerely,