WV Rivers Named Partner in Excellence

WV Rivers executive director, Angie Rosser, with Jerry McCarthy, former VEE executive director (left), Mac Thornton, WV Rivers co-founder, and Joe Maroon, VEE executive director.

For 40 years, the Virginia Environmental Endowment, based in Richmond, Virginia  has supported environmental projects in Virginia and in the Kanawha and Ohio River Valleys of Kentucky and West Virginia. Nearly 500 organizations, including WV Rivers, have benefited from the Endowment. Last week, during VEE’s 40th Anniversary, WV Rivers and 21 other organizations were recognized as Partners in Excellence by the Virginia Environmental Endowment.

Angie Rosser, WV Rivers executive director, shares, “VEE was instrumental in launching West Virginia Rivers Coalition as one of the nation’s first statewide water policy groups. Citizens of the Ohio and Kanawha River basins in West Virginia simply wouldn’t have the knowledge and voice they do without VEE’s response to the needs of the region.”

Legislature Set on Weakening Environmental Regulations

The WV Legislature, through its passage of the Regulatory Reform Act of 2016 (SB 619), shows their interest in a wide-ranging stripping down of our environmental protections. The Act requires state agencies to determine whether their rules, policies, and recommendations are stricter than federal laws.

WVDEP has undertaken a review of its rules, noting which are more stringent than their federal counterpart. WVDEP’s findings underwent a public comment period and WV Rivers submitted comments defending rules that protect our water.

Next, the WVDEP will submit a report to the Legislature by November 1 for consideration during the 2018 legislative session. We’re keeping an eye on this issue and will keep you informed about proposed changes to West Virginia’s water protections.

Join the WV Rivers Team:
Appalachia Gas Working Group Coordinator

WV Rivers is seeking an hourly contracted coordinator to lead the efforts of the Appalachian Gas Working Group (AGWG), a coordinated effort involving many in-state and regional partners to end public harm from fracking and fracked oil and gas infrastructure. The AGWG supports healthy communities, property rights and a just transition to clean renewable energy.

The Appalachian Gas Working Group Coordinator will work closely with the WV Rivers’ Program Director and other AGWG Partners’ staff on the overall management of AGWG Strategic Plan and will facilitate communication and coordination among the working group and across its teams. Read the position description and learn how to apply here.

Monitoring Headwater Streams in WV

In September, volunteer water quality monitors gathered at the Stuart Recreation Area in the Monongahela National Forest for the 3rd Annual Watershed Snapshot Day, hosted by WV Rivers and our partner in the WV-VA Water Quality Monitoring Program, Trout Unlimited. Eight teams of monitors were deployed into Monongahela National Forest to collect baseline water quality data on headwater streams, helping program partners understand water quality conditions in the northern Monongahela National Forest.

You can learn more about the WV-VA Water Quality Monitoring Program and WV Rivers this Saturday, 10/14, during the American Conservation Film Festival, in Shepherdstown, WV. The program’s film, Guarding Our Waters, will be featured during the “Protecting WV Waters” film block and filmmaker panel. Learn more.

Private Lands, Public Waters
Protecting Drinking Water in Jefferson County

In September, WV Rivers organized a conservation roundtable of local land trusts and farmland protection boards to explore overlaps in policies supporting both land conservation and water quality. The team is part of the braintrust for Private Lands, Public Waters, the third Safe Water project in Jefferson County. The conservation groups are helping create an action plan for using land protection techniques — like conservation easements — to help local water utilities ensure safe water supplies.

Check out the video above to learn how Jefferson County’s watershed groups are working to improve water quality for Jefferson County residents and for those who live downstream. WV Rivers produced this compilation as part of the Safe Water Jefferson County project.

Snap a Photo and Help Rivers

Check out this beautiful photo of the Greenbrier River submitted by a Water Reporter member.

Do you love the rivers of the Southern Monongahela National Forest  the Birthplace of Rivers? Do you want to protect the Williams, Cherry, Cranberry, Gauley, and Greenbrier? It is easy to help!

Download the Water Reporter app, join the WV Rivers community and submit your photos of these beautiful waters. Your images will be automatically added to an online map, helping document river conditions and grow awareness for the need to protect these special places. Learn more about how it works.

Community Meeting on WV Water Crisis Settlement – 10/14

Those affected by the 2014 Freedom Industries chemical leak are invited to a community meeting on the WV American Water contamination settlement on Saturday, Oct. 14. at 6:30pm at the Charleston Civic Center. Learn about the settlement and the claims filing process. Learn more.

WV Rivers in the News

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