About Us

Patuxent Riverkeeper is a nonprofit watershed advocacy organization affiliated with the Waterkeeper Alliance in New York, an umbrella group that licenses and links Waterkeepers internationally. The sole purpose of the Patuxent Riverkeeper is to protect, restore, and advocate for clean water in the Patuxent River and its connected ecosystem. We patrol the river, investigate and resolve water quality and pollution complaints, launch and manage restoration projects, raise awareness about the river and its problems and work toward better enforcement of current laws and better laws to protect the river. The Patuxent River drainage area covers 930 square miles overall and runs north to south for 110 linear miles through seven Maryland counties, terminating at the Chesapeake Bay. The Patuxent is the longest and deepest intrastate river in Maryland, ranging from ankle wading depths, down to more than 180 feet.

Our mission is to:

...conserve, protect and replenish the State's longest and deepest intrastate waterway. Our tools include strategic advocacy, restoration and education to achieve long term sustainability for the ecosystem of the entire Patuxent River basin and the people who rely on its future.

The Waterkeeper model for advocacy stresses grassroots engagement, a willingness to challenge the status quo, confront polluters and where necessary, sue them, and pursue an uncompromising vision of clean water. Launched in 2004, Patuxent Riverkeeper has worked on a gamut of pollution, water quality, growth management, environmental justice and resource policy issues in all seven Counties of the river. Thanks to the dedication and hard work of members, staff, volunteers, and supporters, the organization has emerged as a critical watershed protection advocate that provides a hub and clearinghouse for citizen efforts to preserve the river. The Patuxent Riverkeeper has an "anti-funding conflict" policy and declines grants from the river's polluters while working holistically to deal with the present and future viability of the river.

You can download our Patuxent 20/20 implementation plan for the river, here: Patuxent 2020 Plan