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InvestigateWest launches on Spot.Us with story examining cruise ship industry

Just how green are those cruise ship tourism dollars that roll into Seattle and other west coast cities every spring and summer? Help InvestigateWest journalists find out by pledging online to support our work through an innovative journalism startup launching in Seattle Wednesday.

InvestigateWest’s story on the environmental impact of the fast-growing cruise ship industry is one of only three selected by Spot.Us for their Seattle area launch. Founded in San Francisco in 2008, Spot.Us makes it easy to support regional and local investigative reporting: log onto the site, check out the news and with just a few clicks, make a donation (as little as $20.00) to fund a story that impacts all of us.

The quality of our Puget Sound waters affects everyone living in this region. Cruise ships visiting Seattle bring more than 800,000 people to our area. The ships generate sewage, wastewater, hazardous waste, garbage and other toxic substances. Vancouver, B.C., gets even more cruise ship visitors. What’s the impact of these floating cities on human health and aquatic life? While cruise ship companies have certainly made improvements, we think it's a good time to take a look at the industry and the waters they traverse to see if the sparkling image the industry projects lines up with reality.