America’s 10 Most Endangered Rivers and Why They Are Threatened

Lake Mead

Lake Mead, which stores Colorado River water, shows a bath tub ring from low water levels. Photo credit: Bureau of Reclamation

Conservation group American Rivers released its annual “Most Endangered Rivers” list on Tuesday, highlighting how 2017 is a “critical year for rivers and clean water.”

In the announcement of this year’s top 10, the non-profit noted how the Trump administration’s proposed budget cuts pose a threat to rivers and communities nationwide.

“President Trump has abandoned critical river protections including the Clean Water Rule, leaving small streams and wetlands—sources of drinking water for one in three Americans—vulnerable to harmful development and pollution,” the organization stated.

According to the list, the Lower Colorado River—which runs through Arizona, Nevada and California—is the country’s most endangered river.

  1. Lower Colorado River, Arizona, California, Nevad
    Threat: Water demand and climate change.
  2. Bear River, California
    Threat: new dam
  3. South Fork Skykomish, Washington
    Threat: new hydropower project
  4. Mobile Bay Rivers, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi
    Threat: poor water management
  5. Rappahannock River, Virginia
    Threat: fracking
  6. Green-Toutle River, Washington
    Threat: new mine
  7. Neuse and Cape Fear Rivers, North Carolina
    Threat: pollution from hog and chicken farms
  8. Middle Fork Flathead River, Montana
    Threat: oil transport by rail
  9. Buffalo National River, Arkansas
    Threat: pollution from massive hog farm
  10. Menominee River, Michigan, Wisconsin
    Threat: open pit sulfide mining

 

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