Water management in the Savannah River Basin is complicated. With hundreds of sources of environmental pollution, the Savannah River is impaired by heavy metals, sediment, and low levels of dissolved oxygen. Industrial expansion and land development increase the risk of further pollution. Demand for freshwater increases as communities grow larger and local groundwater is depleted, a problem particularly acute near coastal areas where saltwater continually intrudes.
Although federal and state governments are supposed to maintain water quality, at least 50 different government and private entities share responsibility in the Savannah River basin. Conflicts in oversight, inaccurate assumptions and counter-productive activities resulted in an urgent need for general oversight and coordination.
As a result, a group of citizens joined joined together in 2001 to address these concerns and formed Savannah Riverkeeper. We are part of the Waterkeeper Alliance, a movement of more than 290 organizations worldwide who fight for swimmable, drinkable, fishable waterways. Our unique brand of grassroots citizen advocacy allows us to advocate for the health and viability of the entire watershed.
Savannah Riverkeeper fulfills our objectives through three main goals. All of our work falls into these categories: