Along the East Coast Greenway, 50 key rivers total over 7,000 miles.
All of the original 13 colonies are on the East Coast. Pennsylvania doesn’t directly touch the coast, but the Delaware River does.
Up until the emergence of railroads in the 1830s, rivers and other waterways were the most commonly used way to travel long distances in the U.S.
⅔ of drinking water in the United States comes from rivers and streams.
The East Coast is the most populated coastal area in the country.
$97 billion of river-related recreation and tourism is created annually in the U.S.
John MacGregor, a Scottish explorer, is considered the founder of recreational canoeing. Prior to the mid 1800s, canoes were chiefly used for transportation, trade, and war. Historically, canoes have been made from logs, animal skins and tree bark. Birch bark was commonly used in the U.S. and Canada because of it was lightweight, waterproof, smooth and abundant, making it ideal for travel on rivers and lakes.
The average American has a water footprint of 32,911 gallons/day. This includes water used for the production of food, energy, clothing and other goods. It takes about 6,800 gallons of water to grow a day's food for a family of four. 80% of the fresh water used in the U.S. is for irrigating crops and generating thermoelectric-power.
The first Earth Day was held April 22, 1970 as a reaction to many environmental disasters, including a fire in the Cuyahoga River in Ohio. The federal Clean Water Act was passed in 1972. Forty years later, the percentage of water considered safe for fishing and swimming has doubled across the country. One major threat to rivers is stormwater pollution. Rain often washes litter, oil, and other pollutants from infrastructure, like roads, into the river basin. The East Coast Greenway, with its intent to be lined by green space as a linear park, can be part of the solution by both shifting car trips to bike rides and walks and by creating natural landscapes that filter pollutants and reduce erosion feeding into our corridor's streams, creeks, and rivers.
Originates from the Carib word “kenu” which means dugout and from the Arawakan word canaoua and Spanish word canoa.
The beginning of a river.
(Ki ak/qayaq) translates to “man-boat” in Inuktitut.
The end of a river.
“River that flows both ways”: what the Mohican tribe called what we now know as the Hudson River, before English and Dutch settlers arrived.
One of the nation's largest rivers; European spelling for the Algonquin word Patawomeke, which means "place where people trade" or "great trading place." The word is also similar to the Greek word for river, potamus.
The North American river otter once lived in every state in the United States, but its populations have significantly reduced due to water pollution, habitat loss, and trapping for the fur trade. River otters can stay underwater for up to 8 minutes.
Freshwater animals are disappearing five times faster than land animals. Of the 1,200+ species listed as threatened or endangered, 50% depend on rivers and streams. At least 123 freshwater species became extinct during the 20th century. These include 79 invertebrates, 40 fishes, and 4 amphibians.
Manatees are related to elephants, not dolphins or whales. The West Indian manatee lives in rivers and coastal waters from Florida to Brazil.
Photos and information compiled from our East Coast River Relay partner organizations and other riverkeeper and environmental organizations. We appreciate the important stewardship these organizations do.
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