There are hundreds of grassroots organizations and thriving non-profits dedicated to the preservation of California's many rivers, creeks, and watersheds. Some of these organizations are focused on a single conservation project or area, such as the American River Conservancy, while larger non-profits, like American Whitewater, protect rivers nationwide.
American Whitewater has undertaken the huge task of preservation and restoration on ALL rivers in the United States. They pick the most pressing issues and call upon member and community support to help them protest degradation and encourage conservation. In California, AW has recently helped with the monthly releases on the Feather River and the hydropower relicensing projects that are being negotiated with local municipal utility districts.
Friends of the River was founded in 1973 in an effort to save the Stanislaus River from being dammed. Despite their famous efforts, (one of their founders chained himself to a rock for several days), the New Melones Dam was built and a lake now covers what was once the most popular class III whitewater run in California. Its 6,000 members, full-time staff, board of directors, and an advisory council are now committed to preserving, protecting,and restoring California's rivers, streams, and watersheds.
American River Conservancy is dedicated to wildlife and land preservation surrounding the American River watershed. Since their start in 1989, they have completed over sixty conservation projects, including the protection of 8,400 acres of fisheries, wildlife and endangered species habitats, and recreational and scenic lands in El Dorado County. They recently acquired eight miles of land that will be used for a bike and walking trail along the river. The trail will join at Folsom Lake with another sixty mile bike path.
Tuolumne River Trust is dedicated to preserving and restoring the Tuolumne River watershed. They are working on restoring Hetch-Hetchy, saving the South Fork of the Tuolumne, and saving the Clavey River, one of the main tributaries to the Tuolumne.
Save the American River Association (SARA) is a grassroots organization that began in 1961 to preserve and restore the American River. They have restored riparian and fish habitats over the last 45 years.
South Yuba River Citizens' League is a community-based educational nonprofit corporation committed to the protection, preservation and restoration of the entire Yuba Watershed. SYRCL works to fulfill its mission by aggressively seeking environmental solutions through the tools of education, organization, collaboration, litigation and legislation.
Friends of the Eel River is a not for profit organization devoted to restoring the Eel River and its tributaries to their natural state of abundance and to make them wild and free.
Disclaimer: River descriptions and classifications may change due to natural events that may create new hazards or flows. C-W-R advises that any paddler that uses this site be additionally informed by seeking out local news and updates for changes on this river.
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