Standing Up for Clean Water: A Message from our Leadership

2015 Annual Report highlights the Conservancy's clean water victories

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A Message from Potomac Conservancy's Leadership

You deserve a river that is safe to fish and swim in. A river that provides clean water to your family’s home. A river you can kayak on, splash in, and hike along without worry. 

You deserve a healthy and restored Potomac River.

Through our Land Protection, Clean Water Advocacy, and Community Conservation programs, we’re protecting river friendly lands along the Potomac, holding elected leaders accountable, and empowering local residents to take a stand for clean water. 

With your support, we have achieved some of the biggest clean water victories in Potomac Conservancy’s 23-year history!

  • Saved White Horse Mountain from destruction: You laid the groundwork to permanently protect a 1,700-acre forest in the headwaters of West Virginia.
  • Stood up to an irresponsible developer: You rallied over 6,400 community members to take action and demanded stronger protections for riverside trees.
  • Empowered a local movement: You equipped hundreds of cleanup volunteers and removed 7,750 pounds of shoreline trash.

And that’s just scratching the surface. 

You are part of a powerful local movement of 21,000 champions who are fueling innovative conservation and advocacy efforts in your community.

Thanks to your efforts and our region’s commitment to clean streams, the Potomac is the healthiest it’s been in decades! Pollution levels are decreasing, fisheries are rebounding, and more people are getting outside to enjoy the river.

But our work is far from over.

Recent headlines leave little doubt that our leaders are failing to protect local waters.

In the past year alone, the Potomac River — the source of drinking water for you and nearly 6 million people — has been abused by chemical spills, sewage overflows, and contaminated coal ash water.

Making matters worse, an unprecedented rise in polluted runoff is degrading water quality, damaging fishing grounds, and exposing the public to dangerous bacteria and toxins.

The Potomac is a community treasure that shouldn’t be spoiled by a few special interests and irresponsible developers.

With you by our side, we aren’t going to rest until our children can swim in our streams, fishermen can eat their catch, and you can drink water out of your tap without a Brita filter.


Our team is excited to forge ahead in the year to come. We’ll be protecting upstream land, forming new partnerships, advancing clean water laws, and offering expanded opportunities for volunteers to restore shorelines in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC. 

Thank you for being part of the team that shares a collective vision for a healthy and restored Potomac! Together, we’ll achieve a swimmable and fishable Potomac by 2025!

Take a look at the stories in our latest Annual Report and learn more about the ways you are fighting for the Potomac and building a local and vocal movement for clean water.


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