River Patrol / Evaluation of Pollution Incidents – The presence of our Waterkeeper boat and kayaks on the three rivers is critical to improve the water quality through visible monitoring and patrols in areas where the threat to water quality is greatest. To maximize our visibility on the water, and our response to threats throughout our region, the Waterkeeper stores its boat with rapid response as a priority. By establishing 3RWK as a trusted resource, these threats are reported to us by partner organizations and concerned citizens or community groups. 3RWK maintains high quality monitoring and sampling technologies to thoroughly and credibly investigate pollution threats and incidents.
Water Monitoring – Currently in Western Pennsylvania there are enormous efforts by watershed organizations to collect and monitor water quality data. 3RWK partners with theses organizations to create a systematic scientific and legal approach to improving the water quality in our Three Rivers based on their water data sampling and our own patrols and visual assessments. This includes the utilization of our volunteer monitoring and patrolling programs, review of permits and daily monitoring reports, consultations from our legal team, and effective communications with our supporters and the general public.
Community Education and Engagement – Our aim is to build lasting relationships with those who utilize the rivers for recreation and empower them to become vocal river advocates. We inform them of the threats to our waterways, involve them in the protection of water quality, and give them the tools to achieve our shared vision of fishable, swimmable, and drinkable water. By providing technical and legal assistance, mapping tools, and access to available information, 3RWK recruits and educates a new generation of river stewards.
Clean Water Laws Enforcement – Our model focuses on scientific and legal advocacy with the aim of holding polluters accountable to the law, particularly through the Clean Water Act. We do this through regular review of water permits, on-the-water data collection and engagement in regulatory proceedings and permit applications. Combining scientific rigor with legal expertise, we serve as an enforcer of the nation’s clean water laws where state and federal agencies have failed.