DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Ohio River has been named in a new report that could have impacts for years to come for residents in numerous states.
American Rivers is an organization with a mission to preserve and restore rivers across the country, according to their website. The organization released its list for 2023 of endangered rivers in America, which includes the Ohio River as the second-most endangered.
Beginning in Pennsylvania and ending in Illinois, the Ohio River serves six states and is 981 miles long. The river provides drinking water to more than 5 million people.
Climate change and pollution are listed as the two major threats to the large river. Drinking water for the millions of people that receive their water from the river is put at risk, the study shows.
“Freshwater species are going extinct faster than ocean or land species, and rivers are among the most threatened ecosystems on the planet,” American Rivers says. “Climate change is fueling more severe floods and droughts, and unjust policies put the burden of these impacts disproportionately on communities of color and Tribal Nations.”
A decision that can be made by the public within the next year, the threat to the river and communities, and the river’s significance to people and wildlife are the listed factors that go into the group’s process for choosing rivers that are deemed to be in need of attention.
In Arizona, the Colorado River at the Grand Canyon took the top spot in the report for the most-endangered river.
Click here to read the full report conducted by the organization.