Wild and Scenic Rivers Hill Week – A Virtual Success
American Whitewater and a wide ranging group of partners and stakeholders met recently with members of Congress and their staffs to educate, gain the support of, and strategize with policy makers about Wild and Scenic Rivers legislation. This week long advocacy campaign is a product of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Coalition, a partnership between like-minded organizations American Whitewater helped found in 2019, with the goal of promoting and supporting the importance of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, new designations under the Act, and the eligibility designation of worthy streams across the country. In past years, Hill Week has been a face-to-face DC fly-in, however due to COVID-19 the event was held virtually this year.
The advocacy week was still a huge success and consisted of workshops covering the nexus of river conservation and energy issues; justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in Wild and Scenic River protection; the state of congress and environmental legislation prospects; opportunities for river protection through clean water policy; strategies for using the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to protect and improve water quality and much more. The goals of engaging individual congressional offices, Senate and House committees, and federal agency leadership, plus bringing Coalition members together to forge a productive professional network of river protection advocates were met and we moved the ball forward for a slate of new Wild and Scenic designations that now have an even greater chance of becoming law during this session of Congress.
The Wild and Scenic Rivers Coalition was created to unite those working in river protection to create a more cohesive and supported community. The mission of this relatively new organization is to protect and defend existing and potential Wild and Scenic Rivers and broaden the movement for their conservation by raising awareness about their value. To learn more visit the Coalition website.