About

Why a Waterkeeper on the Ohio River?

Contamination of the Ohio River pollutes the Mississippi River, Gulf of Mexico, and the world’s oceans. Downstream residents and communities along the Ohio River should be assured that excessive and illegal upstream pollution is mitigated and eliminated. You and your community should be able to enjoy an unimpaired Ohio River.

The Lower Ohio River Waterkeeper educates citizens to engage public officials and hold polluters accountable to protect community and watershed health, restore wildlife habitat, and enjoy a fishable, swimmable and drinkable Ohio River.

We steward the entire river through dedication to over 9,000 square miles of watersheds and 300 miles of the Ohio River between the Kentucky and Wabash Rivers. Our unique ability to operate and organize in both Kentucky and Indiana allows us to hold each state culpable for the collective water quality of the Ohio River.

As a premier and independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization our very survival, ability to work, and long-term sustainability is entirely dependent on the generosity of you and the people you know. Your membership donation of $20 or more allows us to keep you informed of the threats to your watershed and our efforts to champion a healthy Ohio River.

Tributary Watersheds

We steward the entire Ohio River river by focusing on 300 miles between the Kentucky and Wabash Rivers. We influence the Ohio River’s health by working throughout over 9,000 square miles of tributary watersheds including the Salt and Lower Green watersheds in Kentucky and the Silver, Blue, and Pigeon river watersheds of Indiana. Our unique ability to educate and advocate in both Kentucky and Indiana allows us to hold each state accountable for the collective water quality of the Ohio River.

The Lower Ohio River Waterkeeper’s territorial area contains the following US Geologic Survey (USGS) Hydrologic Unit Codes (HUC) cataloging units:

05140101 — Silver-Little Kentucky Area = 1240 mi2
05140102 — Salt Area = 1450 mi2
05140103 — Rolling Fork Area = 1430 mi2
05140104 — Blue-Sinking Area = 1880 mi2
05140201 — Lower Ohio-Little Pigeon Area = 1370 mi2
05140202 — Highland-Pigeon Area = 1000 mi2
05110005 — Lower Green Area = 911 mi2
Total Area 9,281 mi2