ALTERATION: Any human induced activity that changes the existing condition of a critical area. Alterations include, but are not limited to: grading; filling; dredging; draining; channelizing; clearing or removing vegetation; discharging pollutants; paving; construction; demolition; or any other human activity that changes the existing landforms, vegetation, hydrology, wildlife, or wildlife habitat of a critical area.
ANADROMOUS FISH: Species, such as salmon, which are born in fresh water, spend a large part of their lives in the sea, and return to fresh water rivers and streams to procreate.
APPLICANT: The person, party, firm, corporation, or other entity that proposes any activity that could affect a critical area.
AQUIFER: A saturated geologic formation that will yield a sufficient quantity of water to serve as a private or public water supply.
AQUIFER RECHARGE AREAS: Areas where the prevailing geologic conditions allow infiltration rates which create a high potential for contamination of groundwater resources or contribute significantly to the replenishment of potable groundwater. Aquifer recharge areas are classified as follows:
   A.   High significance aquifer recharge areas: Areas with slopes of less than fifteen percent (15%) that are underlain by coarse alluvium or sand and gravel.
   B.   Moderate significance aquifer recharge areas:
      1.   Areas with slopes of less than fifteen percent (15%) that are underlain by fine alluvium, silt, clay, glacial till, or deposits from the electron mudflow; and
      2.   Areas with slopes of fifteen percent (15%) to thirty percent (30%) that are underlain by sand and gravel.
   C.   Low significance aquifer recharge areas:
      1.   Areas with slopes of fifteen percent (15%) to thirty percent (30%) that are underlain by silt, clay, or glacial till; and
      2.   Areas with slopes greater than thirty percent (30%).
BASE FLOOD: A flood having a one percent (1%) chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year, also referred to as the 100-year flood.
BOG: A wetland with limited drainage generally characterized by extensive peat deposits and acidic waters. Vegetation includes sedges, sphagnum moss, shrubs and trees.
BUFFER OR BUFFER AREA: A naturally vegetated and undisturbed or revegetated zone surrounding a critical area that protects the critical area from adverse impacts to its integrity and value, or is an integral part of the resource's ecosystem.
CITY: The city of Orting.
CITY ADMINISTRATOR: The city administrator of the city of Orting or any other city official appointed by the mayor to administer this title.
CLEARING: The removal of timber, brush, grass, ground cover, or other vegetative matter from a site that exposes the earth's surface of the site or any actions that disturb the existing ground surface.
CRITICAL AREAS: Include wetlands, fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas, moderate and high erosion hazard areas, high seismic hazard areas, moderate and high landslide hazard areas, moderate and high volcanic hazard areas, aquifer recharge areas of moderate and high significance, and flood hazard areas.
CRITICAL GEOLOGIC HAZARD AREAS: Lands or areas subject to high or severe risks of geologic hazard.
CRITICAL HABITAT: Critical habitats are those habitat areas which meet any of the following criteria:
   A.   The documented presence of species listed by the federal government or state of Washington as endangered, threatened, or critical.
   B.   Those streams identified as "shorelines of the state" under the city of Orting shoreline master program.
   C.   Those wetlands identified as class I wetlands, as defined in this chapter.
CRITICAL SPECIES: All animal and plant species listed by the state or federal government as threatened or endangered.
DEVELOPMENT RIGHT: Any specific right to use real property which inures to an owner of real property through the common law, statutory law of real property, the United States and Washington constitutions and as further defined and delineated herein.
EPICENTER: The location on the surface of the earth directly above the place where an earthquake originates.
EROSION: A process whereby wind, rain, water, and other natural agents mobilize and transport soil particles.
EROSION HAZARD AREAS: Those lands susceptible to the wearing away of their surface by water, wind or gravitational creep. Erosion hazard areas are classified as low, moderate or high risk based on slope inclination and soil types as identified by the U.S. department of agriculture soil conservation service (SCS):
   A.   Low: All sites classified with soil types designated by SCS as having no or slight erosion hazard.
   B.   Moderate: All sites classified with soil types designated as moderate hazard.
   C.   High: All sites classified with soil types designated as severe or very severe erosion hazard.
EXISTING AND ONGOING AGRICULTURE: Those activities conducted on lands defined in Revised Code Of Washington 84.34.020(2), and those existing activities involved in the production of crops or livestock. Activities may include the operation and maintenance of farm and stock ponds or drainage ditches; operation and maintenance of existing ditches or irrigation systems; changes from one type of agricultural activity to another agricultural activity; and normal maintenance, repair, and operation of existing serviceable structures, facilities, or improved areas. Activities which bring a nonagricultural area into agricultural use are not part of an ongoing operation. An operation ceases to be ongoing when the area on which it is conducted is converted to a nonagricultural use or has lain idle for more than five (5) years.
FACULTATIVE WETLAND PLANTS: Plants that occur usually (estimated probability greater than 67 percent to 99 percent) in wetlands, but also occur (estimated probability 1 percent to 33 percent) in nonwetlands.
FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CONSERVATION: Land management for maintaining populations of species in suitable habitats within their natural geographic distribution so that the habitat available is sufficient to support viable populations over the long term and isolated subpopulations are not created. This does not mean maintaining all individuals of all species at all times, but it does mean not degrading or reducing populations or habitats so that they are no longer viable over the long term. Counties and cities should engage in cooperative planning and coordination to help assure long term population viability.
Fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas contribute to the state's biodiversity and occur on both publicly and privately owned lands. Designating these areas is an important part of land use planning for appropriate development densities, urban growth area boundaries, open space corridors, and incentive based land conservation and stewardship programs.
FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CONSERVATION AREAS: Areas that serve a critical role in sustaining needed habitats and species for the functional integrity of the ecosystem, and which, if altered, may reduce the likelihood that the species will persist over the long term. These areas may include, but are not limited to, rare or vulnerable ecological systems, communities, and habitat or habitat elements including seasonal ranges, breeding habitat, winter range, and movement corridors; and areas with high relative population density or species richness. Counties and cities may also designate locally important habitats and species.
FISH HABITAT: Habitat that is used by fish at any life stage at any time of the year, including potential habitat likely to be used by fish that could be recovered by restoration or management and includes off channel habitat.
FLOOD HAZARD AREAS: Those areas subject to inundation by the base flood. These areas consist of the following components, as determined by the city:
   A.   Floodplain: The total area subject to inundation by the base flood.
   B.   Flood fringe: That portion of the floodplain outside the floodway which is generally covered by floodwaters during the base flood. It is generally associated with standing water rather than rapidly flowing water.
   C.   Floodway: The channel of the stream and that portion of the adjoining floodplain that is necessary to contain and discharge the base flood flow without increasing the base flood elevation more than one foot (1').
FORESTED WETLAND: A wetland with at least twenty percent (20%) of the surface area covered by woody vegetation greater than twenty feet (20') in height.
GEOLOGIC HAZARD AREAS: Lands or areas characterized by geologic, hydrologic, and topographic conditions that render them susceptible to potentially significant or severe risk of landslides, erosion, or volcanic or seismic activity.
GRADING: Any excavating, filling, clearing, leveling, or contouring of the ground surface by human or mechanical means.
GROUNDWATER: All water found beneath the ground surface, including slow moving subsurface water present in aquifers and recharge areas.
HABITATS OF LOCAL IMPORTANCE: "Habitats of local importance" designated as fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas include those areas found to be locally important by counties and cities.
HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCE PROCESSING OR HANDLING: The use, storage, manufacture or other land use activity involving hazardous substances, but does not include individually packaged household consumer products or quantities of hazardous substances of less than five (5) gallons in volume per container.
HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCE(S): Any liquid, solid, gas or sludge, including any materials, substance, product, commodity or waste, regardless of quantity, that exhibits any of the characteristics of hazardous waste; and including waste oil and petroleum products.
HAZARDOUS WASTE: All dangerous waste and extremely hazardous waste as designated pursuant to chapter 70.105 Revised Code Of Washington, chapter 173-303, Washington administrative code.
   A.   "Dangerous waste" means any discarded, useless, unwanted, or abandoned substances including, but not limited to, certain pesticides, or any residues or containers of such substances which are disposed of in such quantity or concentration as to pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health, wildlife, or the environment because such wastes or constituents or combinations of such wastes:
      1.   Have short lived, toxic properties that may cause death, injury, or illness or have mutagenic, teratogenic, or carcinogenic properties; or
      2.   Are corrosive, explosive, flammable, or may generate pressure through decomposition or other means.
   B.   "Extremely hazardous waste" means any waste which:
      1.   Will persist in a hazardous form for several years or more at a disposal site and which in its persistent form presents a significant environment hazard and may be concentrated by living organisms through a food chain or may affect the genetic makeup of humans or wildlife, and
      2.   Is disposed of at a disposal site in such quantities as would present an extreme hazard to humans or the environment.
HAZARDOUS WASTE TREATMENT AND STORAGE FACILITY: A facility that treats and stores hazardous waste and is authorized pursuant to chapter 70.105 Revised Code Of Washington, chapter 173-303 Washington administrative code. It includes all contiguous land and structures used for recycling, reusing, reclaiming, transferring, storing, treating, or disposing of hazardous waste.
HYDRIC SOILS: A soil that is saturated, flooded or ponded long enough during the growing season to develop anaerobic conditions in the upper part. The presence of hydric soil shall be determined by the following methods described in the approved federal "Wetland Delineation Manual" and applicable regional supplements.
HYDROPHYTE: Any plant growing in water or on a substrate that is at least periodically deficient in oxygen during some part of the growing season, from April 1 to September 30, as a result of excessive water content.
HYDROPHYTIC VEGETATION: Any plant growing in water or on a substrate that is at least periodically deficient in oxygen during some part of the growing season as a result of excessive water content. The presence of hydrophytic vegetation shall be determined following the methods described in the approved federal "Wetland Delineation Manual" and applicable regional supplements.
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE: As defined in Title 9 Chapter 5A Section 4 of this code.
LAHARS: Mudflows and debris flows originating from the slopes of a volcano.
LANDSLIDE: Episodic downslope movement of a mass of soil or rock.
LANDSLIDE HAZARD AREAS: Areas that, due to a combination of slope inclination, relative soil permeability and hydrologic factors, are susceptible to varying risks of landsliding. Landslide hazards are classified as classes I - III based on the degree of risk as follows:
   A.   Class I/high: Areas of greater than thirty percent (30%) slope with soils designated by SCS as moderate, severe or very severe erosion hazard.
   B.   Class II/moderate: Areas of fifteen percent (15%) to thirty percent (30%) slopes with soils designated by the SCS as moderate or severe erosion hazard.
   C.   Class III/low: Areas with slopes less than fifteen percent (15%).
LIQUEFACTION: A process by which a water saturated granular (sandy) soil layer loses strength because of ground shaking commonly caused by an earthquake.
LOT SLOPE: A measurement by which the average slope of the lot is calculated as a percentage. The lowest elevation of the lot is subtracted from the highest elevation, and the resulting number is divided by the horizontal distance between these two (2) points. The resulting product is multiplied by one hundred (100).
MAGNITUDE: A quantity characteristic of the total energy released by an earthquake. Commonly, earthquakes are recorded with magnitudes from zero to eight (0 - 8).
MITIGATION: Avoiding, minimizing, reducing, rectifying, eliminating, or compensating for adverse impacts.
NATIVE VEGETATION: Plant species that are indigenous and naturalized to the Orting region and which can be expected to naturally occur on a site. Native vegetation does not include noxious weeds.
NOXIOUS WEED 1 : Any plant which, when established, is highly destructive, competitive, or difficult to control by cultural or chemical practices. The state noxious weed list in chapter 16-750 is the officially adopted list of noxious weeds by the state noxious weed control board.
OBLIGATIVE WETLAND PLANTS: Plants that occur almost always (estimated probability greater than 99 percent) in wetlands under natural conditions, but which may also occur rarely (estimated probability less than 1 percent) in nonwetlands.
PRIORITY HABITAT: A habitat type with unique or significant value to one or more species. An area classified and mapped as priority habitat must have one or more of the following attributes:
   A.   Comparatively high fish and wildlife density;
   B.   Comparatively high fish and wildlife species diversity;
   C.   Important fish and wildlife breeding habitat;
   D.   Important fish and wildlife seasonal ranges;
   E.   Important fish and wildlife movement corridors;
   F.   Limited availability;
   G.   High vulnerability to habitat alteration; or
   H.   Unique or dependent species.
A priority habitat may be described by a unique vegetation type or by a dominant plant species that is of primary importance to fish and wildlife (such as, oak woodlands, eelgrass meadows). A priority habitat may also be described by a successional stage (such as, old growth and mature forests). Alternatively, a priority habitat may consist of a specific habitat element (such as, consolidated marine/estuarine shorelines, talus slopes, caves, snags) of key value to fish and wildlife. A priority habitat may contain priority and/or nonpriority fish and wildlife. Priority habitats are listed by the state department of fish and wildlife.
PRIORITY SPECIES: Fish and wildlife species requiring protective measures and/or management guidelines to ensure their perpetuation. Priority species are those that meet any of the criteria listed below:
   A.   Criterion 1: State listed or state candidate species. State listed species are those native fish and wildlife species legally designated as endangered (WAC 232-12-014), threatened (WAC 232-12-011), or sensitive (WAC 232-12-011). State candidate species are those fish and wildlife species that will be reviewed by the department of fish and wildlife (POL-M-6001) for possible listing as endangered, threatened, or sensitive according to the process and criteria defined in Washington administrative code 232-12-297. Federal candidate species are evaluated individually to determine their status in Washington and whether inclusion as a priority species is justified.
   B.   Criterion 2: Vulnerable aggregations. Vulnerable aggregations include those species or groups of animals susceptible to significant population declines, within a specific area or statewide, by virtue of their inclination to congregate. Examples include heron rookeries, seabird concentrations, marine mammal haul outs, shellfish beds, and fish spawning and rearing areas.
   C.   Criterion 3: Species of recreational, commercial and/or tribal importance. Native and nonnative fish, shellfish, and wildlife species of recreational or commercial importance and recognized species used for tribal ceremonial and subsistence purposes that are vulnerable to habitat loss or degradation.
   D.   Criterion 4: Species listed under the endangered species act as either threatened or endangered.
QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL: A person with experience and training in the pertinent scientific discipline, and who is a qualified scientific expert with expertise appropriate for the relevant critical area subject in accordance with Washington administrative code 365-195-905(4). A qualified professional must have obtained a B.S. or B.A. or equivalent degree in biology, engineering, environmental studies, fisheries, geomorphology or related field, and a minimum of two (2) years of related work experience.
   A.   A qualified professional for habitats or wetlands must be certified as a professional wetland scientist or a noncertified professional wetland scientist with at least two (2) years of full time work experience as a wetlands professional including experience delineating wetlands using the state or federal manuals, preparing wetland reports, conducting function assessments, and developing and implementing mitigation plans. The person should be familiar with the approved federal "Wetland Delineation Manual" and applicable regional supplements.
   B.   A qualified professional for a geological hazard must be a professional engineer or geologist, licensed in the state of Washington.
   C.   A qualified professional for aquifer recharge areas must be a hydrogeologist, geologist, engineer, or other scientist with experience in preparing hydrogeologic assessments.
RECEIVING PARCEL: A parcel of land on which a development right is used.
RECESSIONAL OUTWASH GEOLOGIC UNIT: Sand and gravel materials deposited by melt water streams from receding glaciers.
SALMONID FISH USE: Those waters used by salmonid or anadromous fish for spawning, rearing or migration. If salmonid fish use has not been determined, salmonid fish use shall be presumed for waters having the following characteristics:
   A.   Stream segments having a defined channel of two feet (2') or greater within the bankfull width and having a gradient of sixteen percent (16%) or less;
   B.   Stream segments having a defined channel or two feet (2') or greater within the bankfull, and having a gradient greater than sixteen percent (16%) and less than or equal to twenty percent (20%), and having greater than fifty (50) acres in contributing basin size, based on hydrographic boundaries;
   C.   Ponds or impoundments having a surface area of less than one acre at seasonal low water and having an outlet to a fish stream;
   D.   Ponds of impoundments having a surface area greater than 0.5 acre at seasonal low water.
The city may waive or modify the characteristics of this definition where:
   A.   Waters have confirmed, long term, naturally occurring conditions that make them incapable of supporting fish; or
   B.   Sufficient information is available to support a departure from the characteristics of this definition, as determined in consultation with the department of fish and wildlife, affected tribes and interested parties.
SEISMIC HAZARD AREAS: Areas that, due to a combination of soil and groundwater conditions, are subject to severe risk of ground shaking, subsidence, or liquefaction of soils during earthquakes. These areas are typically underlain by soft or loose saturated soils (such as alluvium), have a shallow groundwater table and are typically located on the floors of river valleys. Geologic material is weighted most heavily in the following classification of seismic risk:
   A.   Class I/high: All areas with lands designated as alluvium and recessional outwash surficial geologic units (as identified in "Groundwater Occurrence And Stratigraphy Of Unconsolidated Deposits, Central Pierce County, WA, Water Supply Bulletin #22, Plates One And Two, U.S. Dept. Of Interior, Geological Survey, Water Resources Division"), or high risk slopes.
   B.   Class II/low: All other sites with a lower risk geological classification.
SENDING PARCEL: A parcel of land from which a development right has been severed, in accordance with this chapter.
SEVER: The removal or separation of some specified right or use from the "bundle of rights" possessed by an owner of real property. The term connotes a removal or separation in perpetuity as distinguished from a restriction or limitation which may be overridden, deleted or subject to a time limitation.
SLOPE: An inclined earth surface, the inclination of which is expressed as the ratio of horizontal distance to vertical distance.
SLUDGE: A semisolid substance consisting of settled solids combined with varying amounts of water and dissolved materials generated from a wastewater treatment plant or system or other sources, including septage sludge, sewage sludge, or industrial sludge.
SLUDGE LAND APPLICATION SITE: A site where stabilized sludge, septage, and other organic wastes are applied to the surface of the land in accordance with established agronomic rates for fertilization or soil conditioning.
SPECIES: Any group of animals classified as a species or subspecies as commonly accepted by the scientific community.
SPECIES, ENDANGERED: Any fish or wildlife species that is threatened with extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range and is listed by the state or federal government as an endangered species.
SPECIES OF LOCAL IMPORTANCE: Those species of local concern due to their population status or their sensitivity to habitat manipulation, or that are game species.
SPECIES, PRIORITY: Any fish or wildlife species requiring protective measures and/or management guidelines to ensure their persistence as genetically viable population levels as classified by the department of fish and wildlife, including endangered, threatened, sensitive, candidate and monitor species, and those of recreational, commercial, or tribal importance.
SPECIES, THREATENED: Any fish or wildlife species that is likely to become an endangered species within the foreseeable future throughout a significant portion of its range without cooperative management or removal of threats, and is listed by the state or federal government as a threatened species.
TEMPORARY EROSION CONTROL: On site and off site control measures that are needed to control conveyance or deposition of earth, turbidity, or pollutants during development, construction, or restoration.
UTILITY LINE: Pipe, conduit, cable or other similar facility by which services are conveyed to the public or individual recipients. Such services shall include, but are not limited to, water supply, electric power, gas, communications and sanitary sewers.
VOLCANIC HAZARD AREAS: Areas that are subject to pyroclastic flows, lava flows, and inundation by debris flows, mudflows, or related flooding resulting from geologic and volcanic activity on Mount Rainier. Areas at risk to volcanic hazards from Mount Rainier are classified as follows:
   A.   High: Valley floor areas in which there could be a high degree of danger from mudflows of similar magnitude to the electron mudflow (as identified in "map showing potential hazards from future eruptions of Mount Rainier, WA, USGS").
   B.   Moderate: Valley floor areas which could be covered by a mudflow as large as the electron mudflow, in valleys in which mudflows have been relatively frequent (as identified in "map showing potential hazards from future eruptions of Mount Rainier, WA, USGS").
   C.   Low: Valley floor areas which could be covered by a mudflow of similar magnitude to the electron mudflow, in valleys where mudflows have been relatively infrequent, and areas in the other valleys which might be subject to flooding (as identified in "map showing potential hazards from future eruptions of Mount Rainier, WA, USGS").
WETLAND: Areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions. Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas. Wetlands do not include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland sites, including, but not limited to, irrigation and drainage ditches, grass lined swales, canals, detention facilities, wastewater treatment facilities, farm ponds, and landscape amenities, or those wetlands created after July 1, 1990, that were unintentionally created as a result of the construction of a road, street, or highway. Wetlands may include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland areas created to mitigate conversion of wetlands.
(Ord. 2016-985, 7-13-2016; amd. Ord. 2019-1057, 1-8-2020)



1. RCW ch. 17.10.