More than 60 percent of Americans’ drinking water comes from our rivers and streams. American Rivers (americanâ€‹rivers.org) has taken on the mission of protecting these vital waterways from pollution and overdevelopment. Since 1973, the organization has helped to protect and restore more than 150,000 miles of rivers across the country, by improving and removing outdated dams, halting pollution from sewage spills and stormwater runoff, and advocating on behalf of rivers threatened by overuse, poor management, and destructive projects. It also works with land trusts and local communities to designate Wild and Scenic Rivers, like the Salmon in Idaho, and identify dedicated stretches of clean river as “blue trails” to serve as destinations for fishing, boating, and other recreational activities.
Each charity we feature has earned a four-star overall rating from Charity Navigator, which ranks not-for-profit organizations on the strength of their finances, their control of administrative and fund-raising expenses, and the transparency of their operations. Four stars is the group’s highest ranking.