Coeur d'Alene Region
The Coeur d'Alene Region is the northernmost of DEQ's six regions and encompasses the counties of Benewah, Bonner, Boundary, Kootenai, and Shoshone. The region is home to 13.8% of the state's population and is growing rapidly. Among its many assets are three large lakes—Coeur d'Alene, Priest, and Pend Oreille, a host of smaller lakes, Silverwood Theme Park, and Schweitzer and Silver Mountain ski areas. As such, it is a major tourist destination. The region's principal industries include agriculture, timber, mining, and recreation.
Air Quality Plans & Reports
DEQ's Coeur d'Alene Regional Office monitors air quality at four locations in the state's northernmost counties. Summary reports on air pollutant levels are compiled monthly and posted here.
Air Quality in the West Silver Valley
The West Silver Valley area, located at the western end of northern Idaho’s Silver Valley, is a historic mining area along the south fork of the Coeur d’Alene River. As a result of its geography and climate, the West Silver Valley area is susceptible to frequent inversions in the fall and winter, creating particulate matter air pollution. Learn about efforts to address air pollution in the valley and recent related developments here.
West Silver Valley Air Quality Improvement Projects
DEQ is partnering with West Silver Valley communities to develop a number of projects with the goal of improving the area’s air quality. The projects will not only be designed to help the West Silver Valley communities and residents return to a more healthful environment, but several of the projects will help communities and residents save money. Learn more.
Basin-Watershed Advisory Groups
Basin and Watershed Advisory Groups, BAGs and WAGs, are panels of citizens that advise DEQ on water quality objectives and provide input and guidance on development of water quality improvement plans for specific watersheds within DEQ's Coeur d'Alene Region. Learn more.
Bunker Hill Superfund Site
The Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Site is located in Northern Idaho’s Coeur d’Alene River Basin. It became a Superfund site in 1983 as a result of metals contamination from historic mining operations in the Silver Valley. The site covers parts of northern Idaho and eastern Washington and is divided into three areas: the 21-square-mile “Box” populated area, the Box non-populated area, and the Coeur d’Alene Basin. Learn more.
Coeur d'Alene Lake Management
Although Coeur d'Alene Lake is located in the Coeur d'Alene Basin Cleanup Operable Unit 3, remediation of the lake has been tackled separately from EPA's Records of Decision. In 2009, the Coeur d'Alene Tribe and DEQ collaboratively developed the 2009 Lake Management Plan outside the Superfund process using separate regulatory authorities. The goal of the plan is to protect and improve lake water quality by limiting basin-wide nutrient inputs that impair lake water quality conditions, which in turn influence the solubility of mining-related metals contamination contained in lake sediments. Learn more.
Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer
The Spokane Valley-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer was the first aquifer in Idaho and the second in the nation to receive sole source designation as the sole or principal source of drinking water for an area. The aquifer originates at the southern end of Lake Pend Oreille in northern Idaho and extends west under the Rathdrum Prairie in Idaho and the Spokane Valley in Washington, underlying approximately 321 square miles of land. Learn more.
The Restoration Partnership is a collaborative effort to restore natural resources in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin that were injured due to historic releases of contaminated mine waste. A restoration plan is being developed to guide selection and implementation of projects. This includes many opportunities for public involvement.
The Restoration Partnership was formed by the Coeur d’Alene Basin Natural Resource Trustees which are the US Department of Interior (represented by the Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management), the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (represented by the US Forest Service), and the State of Idaho (represented by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game and Idaho Department of Environmental Quality). Learn more.
Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes Response Action Maintenance Plan (RAMP)
The Response Action Maintenance Plan (RAMP) sets out the oversight and management activities of the Trail of the Coeur d'Alenes for the state of Idaho, the Coeur d'Alene Tribe, and EPA. Learn more.
Water Quality Plans & Reports
Subbasin assessments and surface water quality improvement plans have been developed for a number of water bodies in DEQ's Coeur d'Alene Region. In addition, numerous studies have been conducted of ground water resources in the area. Access the plans and reports here.