What Is A Waterkeeper Anyway?
By Kathy Urffer
Today, the Waterkeeper Alliance is the world’s fastest growing environmental movement, with member organizations throughout North, Central and South America, Europe and Australia. The New York/New Jersey area alone has six different Waterkeeper programs including the Long Island Soundkeeper, NY/NJ Baykeeper, Raritan Riverkeeper, Hudson Riverkeeper, Delaware Riverkeeper and Hackensack Riverkeeper.
The Waterkeeper Alliance was founded in 1999 by environmental attorney and activist Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and several veteran Waterkeepers. The Alliance provides a centralized networking source of scientific, legal, media and capacity-building resources for Waterkeeper programs.
Waterkeepers play a unique and sophisticated role within the environmental community – serving as investigator, advocate, scientist, educator and lawyer. But most importantly, they are concerned citizens and members of our communities who are devoted to protecting local water resources on a full-time basis.
There is a good chance that your family and friends in other states have a local Waterkeeper just like Captain Bill. To find a Waterkeeper or for more information on other Waterkeeper programs around the globe, visit www.waterkeeper.org.
¨ There are more than 120 Waterkeeper organizations internationally employing more than 301 full-time and 118 part-time environmental activists, attorneys and scientists.
¨ More than 23,000 individuals devote an inspiring 220,000 volunteer hours each year to support Waterkeeper organization’s advocacy and on-the-water efforts.
¨ Waterkeepers take personal responsibility for the water bodies they represent, actively patrolling and protecting over 67,000 miles of rivers, streams, and shoreline.
¨ Our message of citizen-based advocacy is seen and heard daily in newspapers and on television and radio in our respective communities. Collectively, our environmental newsletters and updates reach 324,000 households around the world.
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