Our Methods

Solutions to clean water.

Our Methods

Pollution is one the largest threats to the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers. Some sources of water pollution in these rivers are sewage, industrial chemicals, and coal pollution.  These threats harm the quality of clean water.

The Tennessee Riverkeeper’s goals are to reduce these threats and protect the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers by enforcing environmental laws and educating the public. 


Our mission is to protect the entire Cumberland and Tennessee Valleys, which includes the River and its tributaries. – David Whiteside, Executive Director, Tennessee Riverkeeper

Outreach and Education

Tennessee Riverkeeper knows that protecting and restoring our waterways takes the effort of every citizen. We work with civic and environmental groups to educate and assist citizens and support policy initiatives. Tennessee Riverkeeper utilizes various methods to engage the public and distribute vital river information.

Technology and Social Media

Tennessee Riverkeeper utilizes the best available technology to raise awareness about pollution and its effects.

Tennessee Riverkeeper uses social networking to build community and raise awareness about these pollution issues. The online outreach work that David Whiteside led for Black Warrior Riverkeeper and now Tennessee Riverkeeper has reached tens of thousands of young citizens and received national acknowledgment for this social networking success. Whiteside has also produced videos on coal mining and other issues for Riverkeeper in addition to many promotional videos featuring famous musicians and actors.

Events and Festivals

Tennessse Riverkeeper attends numerous festivals and events to connect with the public to share information. Through these events, Tennessee Riverkeeper is able to promote various campaigns and keep the public up-to-date on river issues.


Enforcement and Litigation

Tennessee Riverkeeper works with scientists, attorneys, and other experts to protect the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers by challenging illegal pollution.

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Legal Docket

Tennessee Riverkeeper seeks to address pollution by the most effective means, including litigation when appropriate. Environmental laws such as the Federal Clean Water Act and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act provide for citizen enforcement actions against polluters for civil penalties and to enjoin violations.

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Copyright, 2017. All Rights Reserved by Tennessee Riverkeeper.