Water Groups Active in Delaware Watershed

Water Action Groups up and down The Delaware are working to protect the 15.6 million people, and future generations, who rely on the Delaware River Watershed. Visit their sites to learn more about the threat of industrial shale gas drilling, and to take immediate action on behalf of your municipal fresh water security. It’s a critical time to get involved as legislators are currently considering their votes on several important measures.

We’re pleased to update your group’s listing if you see it here, or to add it to the alphabetical list if you don’t.

American Rivers


“American Rivers is the leading conservation organization standing up for healthy rivers so communities can thrive.  American Rivers protects and restores the nation’s rivers and the clean water that sustains people, wildlife, and nature.  Founded in 1973, American Rivers has more than 65,000 members and supporters, with offices in Washington, DC and nationwide. Through our work in five key program areas – Rivers and Global Warming, River Restoration, River Protection, Clean Water and Water Supply – American Rivers is working to protect our remaining natural heritage, undo the damage of the past and create a healthy future for our rivers and future generations.”

Recent Actions:

Named the Delaware River the Most Endangered River of 201o, and the Susquehanna River the Most Endangered River of 2011.


The Chesapeake Bay Foundation
“The Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s (CBF) mission is to Save the Bay, and keep it saved, as defined by reaching a 70 on CBF’s Health Index.
Our vision is that the Chesapeake Bay and its tributary rivers, broadly recognized as a national treasure, will be highly productive and in good health as measured by established water quality standards. The result will be clear water, free of impacts from toxic contaminants, and with healthy oxygen levels. Natural filters on both the land and in the water will provide resilience to the entire Chesapeake Bay system and serve as valuable habitat for both terrestrial and aquatic life.”
Position on Marcellus Shale Gas Drilling:
“As energy companies across the nation position themselves to tap into our country’s natural gas reserves, many residents and environmentalists are concerned about the potential problems associated with extracting this valuable resource. No one disputes the need for local clean, efficient energy resources. But there are concerns over the land and water impacts drilling may cause.”
Recent Actions:
CBF has petitioned the US Energy policy makers for a cumulative impacts analysis to determine the effects that drilling in the Marcellus Shale region has on human health and the environment throughout the Chesapeake Bay states including, but not limited to, impacts to the air, water quality, forest land, national park land, wildlife habitat and ecosystems.


Clean Water Action


“Clean Water Action is an organization of almost one million members working to empower people to take action to protect America’s waters, build healthy communities and to make democracy work for all of us. For 36 years Clean Water Action has succeeded in winning some of the nation’s most important environmental protections through grassroots organizing, expert policy research and political advocacy focused on holding elected officials accountable to the public.”

Recent Actions:
Clean Water Action conducts a series of state-specific Online Actions. Click on Pennsylvania to sign and share current petitions.


Damascus Citizens for Sustainability


“Damascus Citizens for Sustainability is collaborating with universities, national, regional, and local organizations, business and community leaders, elected officials, farmers, artists, and citizens to preserve and protect clean air, land, and pure water as a civil right, and basic human right. Damascus Citizens team of experts and lawyers are presently engaged in several critical lawsuits and hearings within the Upper Delaware River and Watershed – the #1 ‘Most Endangered River in America.’ ”
On Protecting in the Upper Delaware River Watershed:
“The Upper Delaware River Watershed Basin – the source of pure-water for 17 million people. After meetings with the PA Department of Environmental Protection (PA-DEP) and NY Department of Environmental Conservation (NY-DEC) – experts have calculated that over 20,000 wells will be drilled in the Upper Delaware River Watershed Basin. ONE well requires 5 to 9 million gallons of water in the initial drilling, and up to that much each time the well undergoes the hydraulic-fracturing process used to access the gas. This water is allowed to be taken from our streams, lakes, rivers, and aquifers. It is left polluted by the chemicals used in the drilling and fracturing. Some of this water leaches into the drinking water aquifers and surface waters. We are working hard to prevent the dire effects of gas drilling – in the Upper Delaware Watershed. Halliburton and Exxon-Mobil, Cabot, Chesapeake, Stone, Hess and their foreign partners have begun deployment within the Watershed region.”


Delaware Riverkeeper Network


“Established in 1988, the Delaware Riverkeeper Network (DRN) is a nonprofit membership organization. DRN’s staff and volunteers work throughout the entire Delaware River Watershed including portions of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and New York. They share a breadth of knowledge about the environment as well as expertise specific to rivers and watersheds. DRN provides effective environmental advocacy, volunteer monitoring programs, stream restoration projects and public education. In addition, DRN goes to court when necessary to ensure enforcement of environmental safety laws.”

Delaware Riverkeeper, Maya K. van Rossum on Watershed Protection:
“The Delaware Riverkeeper Network (DRN) is the only citizen action organization operating throughout the entire Delaware River Watershed, which includes the Catskill Mountains of NY, Western NJ, Eastern PA, and nearly all of DE, speaking and working for both its protection and its restoration. The Delaware Riverkeeper is an individual who is the voice of the River, championing the rights of the River and its streams as members of our community which must be given priority consideration — after all, without them we do not exist. The Delaware Riverkeeper is assisted by seasoned professionals and a network of members, volunteers and supporters. Together they form DRN, and together they stand as vigilant protectors and defenders of the River, its tributaries and watershed. DRN is committed to restoring the watershed’s natural balance where it has been lost and ensuring its preservation where it still exists.”   SOURCE: delawarerivervoice.blogspot.com

Current Campaigns:
Opposing Senate Bill 1100
“We need Pennsylvania residents to speak out and urge their elected officals to vote NO on Senate Bill 1100  introduced by Senate President Joe Scarnati should it come to the House or Senate floor. We oppose SB1100 because it would trade the rights of citizens and local governments for drilling fees and taxes.  A democratic society supports local decision-making. Pennsylvania’s citizens must be able to have input into the laws and practices that affect them and municipal officials must be able to represent their constituents.”

Recent Actions:
The DRN is a touchstone resource for many water advocacy groups. DRN volunteers are also working to support the FRAC Act, which would remove the gas and oil industry’s exemption from the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the BREATHE Act in both the House of Representatives and the Senate in this legislative session.


Earth Justice


“From day one, Earthjustice has used the law to even the odds against powerful special interests and to hold accountable those who jeopardize the health of the planet. We concentrate our work in three strategic areas: preserving our natural heritage, promoting a clean energy future, and safeguarding our health.”
Recent Actions:
Works within the legal system to ensure our right to clean land, air and water. Created excellent Fracking informational cartoon, entitled Things Find a Way, which received 34,262 views on YouTube, and and the ever-frightful and sobering Fraccidents Map. If you want to be freaked out, you gotta check it out at http://earthjustice.org/features/campaigns/fracking-across-the-united-states
Earthworks – The Oil and Gas Accountability Project

OGAP.org, earthworksaction.org

“OGAP is the only program in the United States with the sole mission of working with tribal, urban and rural communities to protect their homes and the environment from the devastating impacts of oil and gas development. OGAP builds coalitions among economically, racially and politically diverse constituencies. OGAP coordinates two main program areas: Public Health and Toxics, and Regulatory and Governmental Reform.”

Recent Actions:
Government and Regulatory Reform of Fracking is one of the larger issues in their environmental mix. They are seeking Best Practices, Progressive Oil and Gas Regulations and Governmental and Regulatory reform at the municipal, county, state and federal level.

Food and Water Watch


“Food & Water Watch works to ensure the food, water and fish we consume is safe, accessible and sustainably produced. So we can all enjoy and trust in what we eat and drink, we help people take charge of where their food comes from, keep clean, affordable, public tap water flowing freely to our homes, protect the environmental quality of oceans, force government to do its job protecting citizens, and educate about the importance of keeping the global commons — our shared resources — under public control. We envision a world where all people have access to enough affordable, healthy, and wholesome food and clean water to meet their basic needs — a world in which governments are accountable to their citizens and manage essential resources sustainably.”
Recent Actions:
FWW is committed to banning fracking in New York and the mid-Atlantic region. Their website is a useful to activists, with news, ongoing online petitions, action tools and resources. The organization fosters home-grown environmental stewardship.


Gas Truth
Gas Truth is a network of grassroots citizens’ groups fighting unsafe natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania. We have established chapters in the Lehigh Valley, Berks County, and Central Pennsylvania. Natural gas drilling of the Marcellus Shale threatens Pennsylvania’s natural resources, the health of its citizens, and its scenic beauty. Gas Truth is a network of grassroots citizens’ groups fighting to bring an end to unsafe drilling practices in Pennsylvania.

Recent Actions:
On the Gas Truth site, you’ll find news and information on the many issues surrounding natural gas drilling, plus chapter-specific information, an events calendar, and suggestions for actions to take.


PA Campaign for Clean Water


“Formed in 2002, the Pennsylvania Campaign for Clean Water is a coalition of over 140 environmental, conservation, sporting, and religious groups from all corners of the state that speaks in one voice in support of federal and state policies to protect and restore PA’s water resources. Our goals are: Keeping clean waters clean and restoring damaged waterways; Easy public access to information and participation in decision-making; Comprehensive water resource management policies; Firm, fair, and consistent enforcement of laws protecting our water resources.”
Recent Actions:
Working actively to oppose fracking in the Delaware River Watershed, the PA Campaign for Clean Water recently coordinated with other environmental actions groups statewide to stage the largest anti-fracking rally yet in Harrisburg on June 7, 2011.

Penn Environment


“PennEnvironment is a statewide, citizen-based environmental advocacy organization. Our professional staff combines independent research, practical ideas and tough-minded advocacy to overcome the opposition of powerful special interests and win real results for Pennsylvania’s environment. PennEnvironment draws on 30 years of success in tackling our state’s top environmental problems.”
Recent Actions:
On June 6, 2011, after more than four years of litigation, PennEnvironment, the Sierra Club, and several of their local members have succeeded in imposing the largest penalty in Pennsylvania history against a water polluter under the federal Clean Water Act’s citizen enforcement provision.  SOURCE: pennenvironment.org/newsroom

Pennsylvania Environmental Council
“The Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC) protects and restores the natural and built environments through innovation, collaboration, education and advocacy. PEC believes in the value of partnerships with the private sector, government, communities and individuals to improve the quality of life for all Pennsylvanians.”
Recent Actions:
Earlier this week, PEC launched MarcellusFacts.org to “make it easy to stay informed.” Indeed the website is a goldmine of information. Says PEC president Paul M. King: “Our goal in creating MarcellusFacts is to simplify the challenge of being well-informed on this issue and to make the people of Pennsylvania better participants in the public process of Marcellus Shale development.”  SOURCE: http://www.pecpa.org/release/pec-announces-new-marcellus-shale-website

“Natural gas has many potential environmental and public health benefits. But drilling for gas deep in the Marcellus and Utica shale formations is an intensely industrial, inherently hazardous activity that threatens water, air, and land resources and public safety if the proper regulations, with vigilant oversight, aren’t in place.”

Recent Actions:
PennFuture has posted a live PA Drilling Tax Delay Cost Tabulator on their site, and it was rounding $189,867, 792 when I visited. They are strong proponents of a statewide drilling tax, and they recently sponsored a speaking tour across Pennsylvania called “The Fair Share Tour” to support the Vitali Gas Tax measure. President, Jan Jarrett has testified on the subject before numerous state panels and committee meetings.


Protecting Our Waters


“Protecting Our Waters is a Philadelphia-based grassroots alliance committed to protecting the Delaware River Basin, the state of Pennsylvania, and our region from unconventional gas drilling and other threats to our drinking water, environment, and public health.”
Recent Actions:
This Philadelphia-based activist group maintains a wildly informative blog about fracking, and sponsors and publicizes events, demonstrations and artful street performances designed to spread the message that fracking should be banned. Last Spring, POW organized the River to River March, and on June 7, 2011, they joined other action groups to organize hundreds of water activists to flood to the rotunda in the state house. It became the largest environmental demonstration in Pennsylvania to date. POW is currently organizing the next big protest in Philadelphia on September 7th & 8th to coincide and collide with the upcoming Marcellus Shale Coalition’s gas industry trade show.


Additional PA Organizations:

Audubon Society of PA:  pa.audubon.org

Save Our State Forests in PA:  sosinpa.org

Sierra Club of PA:  pennsylvania.sierraclub.org

NEPA Gas Action!: nepagasaction.org


, , , , ,

  1. Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: