Clean Water Defense

Our Clean Water Defense Campaign is leading the global fight for strong regulations and vigilant enforcement of environmental laws.

Our Clean Water Defense campaign defends and enforces clean water laws, standards and permits, and fights against the ever-growing threats to clean and safe water.

Governments around the world have enacted laws to protect water quality and the communities that depend on clean water. Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates around the world work with those laws to restore and protect the world’s waterways. In the United States, there are local, state and national laws designed to control pollution sources and restore our streams, rivers, lakes, and estuaries to drinkable, fishable and swimmable conditions. Increasingly, however, these laws are being rolled back, or even eliminated, to serve powerful corporate interests. The threats are coming from the President, Congress and even agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency – the sole mission of which is to protect human health and the environment from pollution.

Waterkeeper Alliance’s Clean Water Defense campaign and our international network of Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates:

(1) Work with communities to protect and restore waterways around the world;
(2) Aggressively oppose the weakening or elimination of federal environmental statutes, regulations, enforcement, and funding in the United States and around the world; and,
(3) Support clean and free-flowing rivers and waterways.

Waterkeeper Alliance believes that strategic partnerships and strong, issue-based coalitions are essential to protecting and restoring waterways around the world. Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates combine a unique set of strengths that make them highly-valued assets in any coalition fighting for clean water: a solid reputation for professionalism and courage; unrivaled expertise in the scientific, policy and legal issues in their watersheds; deep roots in and support from their communities; knowledgeable and skilled attorneys; and diverse partnerships with key organizations and experts in law, engineering, biology, hydrology, policy, and economics.

Watershed Protection

Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates serve as tireless advocates for the health of their watersheds and communities. On behalf of a grassroots constituency, we employ a variety of tools and strategies to identify problems, respond to citizen complaints, devise appropriate solutions and enforce environmental laws. Waterkeepers are the public’s investigator, scientist, lawyer, lobbyist, and public relations agent for their waterway, patrolling and protecting more than 2.5 million square miles of rivers, streams and coastlines in the Americas, Europe, Australia, Asia, and Africa.

Attacks on Clean Water

In the courtroom, before legislatures and regulatory agencies, and in the court of public opinion, we stand for our communities and for clean water.  Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates are helping lead the opposition to corporate and ideological assaults on the laws and systems that protect public health and the world’s life-sustaining water resources. In the U.S., we are standing against a massive and multi-pronged attack on federal environmental statutes, regulations, enforcement, and funding by the President, Congress and numerous regulatory agencies. We are leading the global fight for strong regulations and vigilant enforcement of environmental laws.

Free Flowing Rivers

Waterkeeper Alliance supports clean and free flowing rivers and waterways, including opposing new dams and diversions, mitigating dams where there is no other option, and removing dams wherever possible.

Ocean Plastic Recovery Initiative

Waterkeeper Alliance’s Ocean Plastic Recovery Initiative mobilizes a network of Waterkeeper Organizations around the world to establish recycling infrastructure and plastic recovery efforts to stop plastic pollution from entering our oceans. This network operates recycling facilities where recovered plastic is consolidated, sorted, and baled.