Raise Your Voice

Help strengthen the voice for the river by joining our Action Network. We’ll keep you up to date on the latest river policy issues and connect you to your elected officials so you can let them know that water quality is important to you.


Act Now

At James River Association we’re committed to securing clean water and a bright future for the James River and all the communities that rely on it, but we need your help!

Essential State Budget Items for a Healthy James River:

  • Funding for an American shad recovery plan, an iconic fish species on the brink of collapse in the James River.
  • Funding for the Virginia Agricultural Cost-Share Program to help farmers protect their local streams through conservation practices.
  • Funding for the Stormwater Local Assistance Fund to help communities reduce runoff pollution and prevent flooding.
  • Funding to stop combined sewer overflows from sending untreated sewage into our waterways.
  • Full funding for land conservation and multi-use trails, including farmland, battlefields, BIPOC and tribal land preservation.
  • Full funding for trees, to expand urban tree canopy, support the Trees for Clean Water Program, and restore critical funding to the New Kent State Nursery.
  • Funding for environmental education and providing Chesapeake Bay meaningful watershed experiential learning for Virginia’s youth.
  • Funding for monitoring PFAS, or forever chemicals, to track contamination hotspots across Virginia’s water sources.
  • Funding for Wildlife Corridors, that establish safe pathways for fish and wildlife to access habitat, and bypass hazards or barriers like roads.
  • Funding for James River Park System Master Plan implementation, to create new infrastructure that supports ecotourism and environmental education

The overall grade of the 2023 State of the James  has improved to a B with a score of 66% from its failing health decades ago.  Although the pace of progress has slowed, a grade-A James River is possible if we keep up our collective efforts and continue to address key issues together. However, the 2023 American shad stock assessment by the Virginia Institute of Marine Science found that populations of American shad in the James are at an all-time low. Given the dire situation, JRA fought for funding to develop an emergency recovery plan that identified immediate actions that could be taken to improve the American shad fishery in the James River. This plan will be delivered to Virginia Legislators in the fall of 2023 with more actions to follow, but it will take a long-term and sustained effort to bring American shad in the James River back from the brink of collapse. 

Become a RiverRep

Want to do more? Join RiverReps — passionate individuals ready to speak up on the issues impacting the James River. RiverReps are trained in how to most effectively share their message for clean water, kept in the loop on our advocacy strategy each legislative session, and asked to take three advocacy actions per year.

The James River Association strives to provide a voice for the River on important policy issues. Through advocacy at the citizen, local, state and federal levels, the James River Association works to ensure the health of the James River. Learn more about our advocacy efforts.

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