Solve pollution problems through voluntary action on the part of the polluter or government

How It Works

  1. EDUCATION: Riverkeepers and outreach staff engage communities that depend on and live near the Potomac and Shenandoah through educational presentations and development of close relationships.
  2. STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT: Our Riverkeepers work with key community members to improve land use practices.
  3. GRASSROOTS CITIZEN ACTION: We call upon citizens to submit public comments and citizen complaints, and connect communities with their local waterways under our River Access & Recreation Program.
  4. BEHAVIORAL REFORM: Our Riverkeepers work with polluters/government agencies to improve practices or regulations that fall short of meeting requirements set forth by environmental laws. Lobby to improve legislation when laws are unable to protect our waters from a particular type of pollution.
Latest Updates
Mettiki Coal

Public Hearing on Reissuance of Clean Water Act Discharge Permit for Mettiki Coal Set for March 24

The Mettiki Coal operation in Western Maryland is suspected of periodically discharging contaminated water which makes its way into drinking wells and the North Branch of the Potomac River. Past inspections have shown evidence of possible metals pollution. The Mettiki facility has submitted a request for a reissuance of its Clean Water Act discharge (NPDES) permit […]


Investigation by Potomac Riverkeeper Led to Discovery of Illegal Activity at Possum Point Power Plant  Washington, D.C. – March 13 – Potomac Riverkeeper Network (PRKN) applauds the fines and settlement for environmental violations perpetrated by Dominion Energy at the company’s Possum Point power station, announced today by Mark Herring, Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Virginia. […]

It’s Budget Time in Virginia — Let the General Assembly Know That Funding Clean Water Must be a Priority!

Dear Friend, It’s Budget Time in Virginia — Let the General Assembly Know That Funding Clean Water Must be a Priority! Dollars can move mountains or better yet, protect our rivers and streams. We have a unique opportunity this year to see meaningful increases in natural resource funding, thanks to the budget proposed by Gov. Northam. […]

cattle in the shenandoah

Respect the Shenandoah

The Shenandoah River is near and dear to the hearts of all those who grew up in the Shenandoah Valley as I did. It is a beautiful river, a great fishing river, and great river for paddling, rafting, and inner tubing. I enjoyed many of those pastimes in my youth, but I stopped going to […]


Help Shenandoah Riverkeeper Pass a Law to Keep Cattle out of Our River!

This Wednesday, January 29, a key House Committee in the Virginia legislature will consider  HB 1422, a bill that sets a 2025 deadline to fence cattle out of waterways and requires state funding to ensure farmers can afford it. Unfenced cattle destroy streambanks and valuable riparian buffers, and directly “deposit” manure and bacteria into the […]

Don’t Mess with Success

The Clean Water Act has been an unmitigated success since it was passed in 1972. So why is the Trump administration rolling it back? Back then, more than two-thirds of U.S. waters were unfit for swimming, fishing, or drinking water use.  The Potomac River had been declared a national disgrace, Lake Erie was dead, and […]

water drop graphic

Imagine A Day Without Water

Go ahead – imagine a day without water. It’s easy to think of terrible examples — hospitals, schools, firefighting companies. Devastating.  But imagine closer to home: you wake up and that first glass of water isn’t there. Neither is the shower, no brushing your teeth. No tea or coffee. And that’s just the first 45 […]


Participate in the EPA Virtual Hearing October 10!

Would you be willing to take a minute of your time to tell EPA weakening coal ash regulations is a really bad idea? I testified last week at the public hearing held by the Environmental Protection Agency on its incredibly ill-founded new proposed regulations concerning disposal of coal combustion residuals (CCR) or toxic coal ash […]

Brent Walls, Upper Potomac Riverkeeper

PFOA/PFAS – Testing Results

As part of my work to investigate and remediate pollution in the Upper Potomac, I recently conducted a stream assessment for the presence of PFAS— extremely toxic chemicals — in two tributaries of the Opeqoun creek, Evans Run and Cold Spring Run. The sample sites were the same locations that West Virginia’s Department of Environmental […]

Comments on the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Draft Chesapeake Bay TMDL Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan

Read the PRNK and Shenandoah Riverkeeper comments on the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Draft Chesapeake Bay TMDL Phase II Watershed Implementation Plan here. Attachment A Attachment B



  • Clean Water is Under Attack

    CAMPAIGN INFORMATION: The Administration has directed the EPA to take sweeping measures to undo clean water protections under the Clean Water Rule intended to safeguard the health of our rivers, streams and wetlands. The announcement to repeal the Clean Water Rule represents one of the most serious assaults on our