Clean water is a basic need. With two-thirds of national park waters impaired and many communities living with unsafe drinking water, we need more protections for our waterways, not less.

Press Release

Groups File Legal Brief in Supreme Court Supporting Stronger Clean Water Protections for All

“We all deserve and expect clean water in our parks and for our communities. Our waterways are all connected and what pollutes one, impacts many….protecting clean water for drinking, swimming…

See more ›

For years, NPCA has long advocated for clean water protections. We all depend on safe water for drinking, swimming, boating, fishing and so much more. And our parks are no different, from the millions of people that visit them, to communities that surround them, to the rare and diverse wildlife that call parks home. NPCA defends park waters from harmful pollution by successfully protecting and restoring water-based landscapes in and around national parks – from the Everglades to the Great Lakes to the Colorado River, improving the health of these waters for the wildlife, park communities, businesses and all who rely on them. As part of this work, we ensure streams, wetlands, lakes and rivers that surround and flow through our national parks have the safeguards they deserve – from regulatory change to legislative action and through the important Clean Water Act — so that millions of Americans have clean water to drink and explore.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are heeding these efforts and taking steps now to ensure federal clean water rules, through the Clean Water Act, protect the waters our communities and national parks depend on.

For the past year, EPA and the Army Corps have listened to people from around the country on how to protect our nation’s waters through roundtable discussions that included NPCA’s diverse park advocates in an ongoing transparent public process.

The agencies proposed restoring longstanding protections that had been eliminated in 2020 — restoring protections for more than half of America’s wetlands, along with many rivers and streams, under the Clean Water Act. For 50 years, the Clean Water Act has safeguarded the waters flowing through our parks, helping to sustain plants and animals and provide recreation opportunities for some of the more than 300 million people who visit them each year. Eliminating those protections put visitors at risk, threatened the drinking water for millions of people and paved the way for more pollution that threatens our national park waterways from trout streams in Yellowstone to wetlands in the Everglades.

We all deserve and expect clean water in our parks and for our communities. Our waterways are all connected and what pollutes one, impacts many. Protecting clean water for drinking, swimming and fishing cannot wait.

NPCA’s Chad Lord

Press Release

Clean Water for Parks and Communities Restored

"Our fight isn’t over and NPCA will continue to push agencies to replace and improve this rule with one that is legal and supports sound science and common sense.” NPCA's…

See more ›

The health of America’s national parks depends upon the health of the waters that surround and flow through them. The National Park Service oversees thousands of miles of waterways and coasts throughout the country – from lakeshores around the Great Lakes to the Colorado River flowing through nine national parks like the Grand Canyon. For more than 20 years, national park visitors have consistently ranked water quality or water access as a top-five most valued attribute when visiting national parks. And Outdoor Industry Association found that consumers spend $887 billion annually on outdoor recreation, with nearly $140 billion on kayaking, rafting, canoeing, scuba diving and other water and recreation activities, all of which takes place in our parks.

Clean water is essential for all people and vital for our national parks, which is why NPCA will continue to fight any rollbacks that put our park waters at risk. We call on the administration and Congress to maintain the highest level of protection for our nation’s waterways for our health, our communities, our parks and all who rely on them.

Sign Up

Get Action Alerts

action alerts graphic

Want national parks in your inbox? Sign up for NPCA email updates to receive news, features, and opportunities to make a difference! You can unsubscribe at any time.