I didn’t know much about them other than their name until I decided to follow the actor Edward James Olmos on Twitter. He’s a big supporter of the group and proudly tweets their accomplishments, so I decided to check them out. Having grown up on the southern shore of Lake Ontario, I’ve taken water for granted pretty much my entire life. Until now. Now that I know (from reading the group’s website) that the Great Lakes contain 95 percent of the United States’ and 20 percent of the world’s fresh surface water supply. it’s not hard to understand why preserving their integrity is so vital to our survival.
Waterkeepers operate all over the globe, not just in the Great Lakes region. They defend our rights to safe, clear water by turning in polluters, watching over unresponsive governmental agencies and advocating water usage rights for all in partnership with local and global environmental and public health organizations. The Alliance has grown from a small band of fishing enthusiasts who joined together in 1966 to clean up the Hudson River to a community of approximately 200 Waterkeeper programs spread throughout six continents.
Great Lakes Waterkeepers work on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border to raise awareness of the need to maintain the integrity of the Great Lakes watershed to ensure safe drinking water and a safe environment for fishermen and other outdoor enthusiasts. Why not check them out here and see for yourself?