Photo Credit: Adriel Heisey
River conservation – restoring the vital arteries of the West
Living rivers are vital to the diversity of life on earth, from the tens of thousands of sandhill cranes that migrate from Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge along the Rio Grande to as far north as southwestern Alberta, Canada, to the human communities whose history is inextricably linked to the ebb and flow of their local waterways. When rivers dry up and vanish, that life vanishes too.
To ensure the future health of Western rivers and all the species that depend on them, WildEarth Guardians revives the pulse of great waterways, exposes the historic injustice to rivers, and aims to untie the tangled knot of archaic water law. Instead of controlling and diverting rivers with levees, ditches, and dams, and pumping them into the hands of the highest bidder, we seek to restore their natural course from source to sea.
The Rio Grande is in Crisis
By 2100, the Rio Grande will lose up to 50% of its current flow because of one-hundred years of water mismanagement policies compounded by climate change. That’s why we launched our #LivingRio campaign to give a voice to the once mighty Rio Grande.
We invite you to join us! With your support the #LivingRio campaign will finally give the Rio Grande a right to its own water and the freedom to flow. A Living Rio is necessary for clean water and all downstream communities.
Wild Rivers Program Work
WildEarth Guardians is a voice for Western rivers. From the iconic Rio Grande to the Colorado River, we believe in living, dynamic rivers from source to sea. Learn about our vision for the Rio Grande: America’s Great River, the challenges it faces, and how you can help.
Like any living thing, the Rio has a pulse. We strive to restore that pulse—and return life to the river.
The Rio Grande’s flows carve unique geologic features, create a haven for wildlife, and support many human communities.
A Challenged Rio
The Rio faces formidable challenges, from archaic water law to dams, pollution, and climate change.
A Voice for the River
Guardians’ Wild Rivers Program Director, Jen Pelz, is fighting for every last drop in the Rio Grande.
Photo: Seth Hughes
How You Can Help
Help revive and restore rivers and all the species that depend on them! Be a guardian for rivers by joining the conversation, learning about current issues, and making your voice heard. Together, we're a powerful force for nature.
Advocates push for additional support for New Mexico’s Strategic Water Reserve
Groups call on state leaders to prepare for unprecedented water challenges by readying tools for climate resilience] Read more >
Wishing the Gila Wilderness a Happy 98th Birthday
I’ll be honest: this is meant to be a note wishing the Gila Wilderness a happy 98th birthday today, June 3. But I’m finding it hard to muster a celebratory mood.Read more >
Judge: Lower Green Peter to Help Fish
Green Peter Reservoir will be lowered to historic levels this fall and early winter, during which period its dam generators will cease to produce electric power, in an effort to preserve young Chinook salmon and steelhead, a federal judge has ordered.Read more >