An annual list from American Rivers highlights the waterways most at risk from climate change, poor water management, pollution, and other dangers.

1 minute read

April 19, 2023, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Aerial view of Eel River running through California forest

Victoria Ditkovsky / Eel River, California

American Rivers has issued its list of America’s Most Endangered Rivers of 2023, an annual survey of the nation’s imperiled waterways.

At the top, unsurprisingly, is the Colorado River segment running through the Grand Canyon, where “rising temperatures and severe drought driven by climate change, combined with outdated river management and overallocation of limited water supplies, put this iconic river at serious risk.”

Other threatened rivers include the Ohio River, whose fragile status was highlighted by the recent East Palestine train derailment that polluted the waterway. “This ongoing chemical disaster underscores the vulnerability of the Ohio River and need for increased safeguards and durable funding for additional and continuous monitoring.”

In Georgia, a proposed uranium mine threatens the unique Okefenokee Swap, a wetland spanning almost half a million acres. In California, the Eel River’s abundant fish and wildlife is dwindling thanks to a pair of defunct dams.

The organization recommends that the federal government designate certain rivers as federally protected water systems, strengthen wetlands protections in the Clean Water Act, and mandate the removal of decommissioned dams, among other actions. See the source article for the full list and more information on efforts to protect U.S. rivers.

Tuesday, April 18, 2023 in American Rivers

Aerial view of homes on green hillsides in Daly City, California.

Depopulation Patterns Get Weird

A recent ranking of “declining” cities heavily features some of the most expensive cities in the country — including New York City and a half-dozen in the San Francisco Bay Area.

April 10, 2024 - California Planning & Development Report

Close-up of maroon California 'Clean Air Vehicle' carpool lane access sticker on the back bumper of a silver Tesla vehicle.

California EV Owners To Lose Carpool Lane Privilege

A program that began in 1999 to encourage more electric car ownership is set to expire next year without Congressional and state action.

April 2, 2024 - San Francisco Chronicle

Aerial view of Oakland, California with bay in background

California Exodus: Population Drops Below 39 Million

Never mind the 40 million that demographers predicted the Golden State would reach by 2018. The state's population dipped below 39 million to 38.965 million last July, according to Census data released in March, the lowest since 2015.

April 11, 2024 - Los Angeles Times

Google street view of grassy lot next to brick church with elevated freeway on other side in Houston, Texas.

Houston Supportive Housing Development Sparks Debate

Critics say a proposed apartment building would negatively impact the neighborhood’s walkability.

April 12 - Houston Chronicle

Closed black wrought iron gate in front of gated residential community with large palm trees along sides of street.

Friday Funny: Gated Community Doubles Down

The Onion skewers suburbia.

April 12 - The Onion

Aerial view of Chicago with river in foreground.

‘Cut the Tape’ Report Takes Aim at Inefficiencies

A set of recommendations from the Chicago mayor’s office calls for streamlining city processes to stimulate more residential and commercial development.

April 12 - Block Club Chicago

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.