10 Reasons Why We Need to Protect Our Rivers

 In Arizona Rafting, Colorado Rafting, Nature & Wildlife

Gunnison River Rafting - Why We Need to Protect Our Rivers - Wilderness Aware

A great snow season means more snow melt and water for our rivers. With warm weather hitting spring earlier, reservoirs are releasing water from their dams and filling the rivers sooner. And that is good news for us—the rafting season starts earlier! For all of you itching to get on the river, you don’t have to wait until summer begins.

Besides depending on a great snow season for full rivers, it’s important that we be active in protecting our rivers too. Not only are healthy rivers necessary to hit some hardcore rapids, they’re necessary for the ecosystem around us.

The plants and animals surrounding the river and canyon would not thrive and be as beautiful as they are if our rivers were polluted. Water is important for everybody and everything’s health. The human body is 55-60% water.

The Clean Water Act

The Clean Water Act of 1972 has helped to keep “billions of pounds of pollution” out of our rivers by addressing point sources like wastewater treatment plants and factories (AmericanRivers.org). However, a lot of polluted runoff is picked up along city streets and farmlands.

This act came about after people began to realize how dirty rivers were. The Cuyahoga River caught on fire due to oil slicked pieces of debris and if you fell into the Potomac River, you needed a tetanus shot.

The Colorado River itself supplies 36 million people with water from Denver to Los Angeles. About 78% is used for agriculture, which grows 15% of our nation’s crops.

Ultimately, rivers are a vital part of living. They tell a story, provide geologic, ecological, biological, and human history, shape culture and societies, provide transport, purity, and more. A deep respect for the river is cultural and together we can work to embed that respect in others to maintain and improve the health of our rivers.

For those of you who worry that your small actions won’t make a difference, consider everybody that you share this information with, those who already make an effort, and how all these actions will collectively and positively improve the health of our rivers.

Reasons to Protect our Rivers

  1. Make rivers safe for people to use
  2. Protect river ecosystem
  3. Help plants flourish
  4. Allow animals to thrive
  5. Keep pollution out
  6. Clean drinking water
  7. Agriculture
  8. Protect geologic, ecological, biological and human history
  9. Helps shape cultures and societies
  10. Transportation

Check out this list of 50 Ways to Save Your River for more ideas on how you can help.

See you on the river!

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