On Friday, Governor John Carney, the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT), the Delaware Nature Society (DNS) and the Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed celebrated new signage marking the boundaries of the Delaware River Watershed. The six signs placed on major roads throughout the state highlight a watershed that provides a home to almost 3/4 of Delaware’s population, supports 34,000 jobs, and supports a vibrant community of wildlife.
“Millions of people in our region depend on the Delaware River Basin for clean drinking water, and we should protect this resource for future generations. The watershed also remains vitally important for outdoor recreation and economic development for communities in Delaware and beyond. We will continue to work with states in our region that rely on the Delaware River Watershed to properly manage this valuable resource,” said Governor John Carney, Chair of the Delaware River Basin Commission.
“Water is the lifeblood of this our state. DelNature is so pleased to celebrate the Delaware River Watershed,” said Delaware Nature Society Executive Director Anne Harper. “This is more than just about sign placement, it’s a long overdue recognition of what this watershed means to our residents, wildlife, and economy. I’d like to thank Governor Carney and DelDOT for placing these signs to spread the word on the importance of the watershed.”
“We’re appreciative of Governor Carney, DelDOT and all of our partners who were part of this collaborative signage process. By bringing awareness of the watershed to residents and visitors, we are creating opportunities for educating and activating people to be stewards of our natural resources,” stated Kelly Knutson, State Policy Manager, Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed. “Our goal with the Delaware River Watershed signage project is to foster a sense of place and deeper connection to others living within our four-state watershed. Delaware now joins New York in erecting roadside signage. We will continue on with this watershed-wide project in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, in a collaborative cross-state manner.”
The Delaware River Watershed encompasses four states, beginning in the Catskill mountains of southeastern New York and flowing downstream past rural, suburban, and urban areas in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. The Delaware portion of the watershed occupies 965 square miles and is home to over 643,000 people; that is half of Delaware’s land area and around 74% of the state’s population!
It also provides drinking water to over 13 million people, including over 725,000 people in Delaware who receive water for drinking and household use from the Delaware River Basin, including the Brandywine River, White Clay, and Red Clay Creeks. The Delaware River Watershed also supports a community of wildlife such as migrating red knots, playful river otters, and majestic blue herons. The watershed promotes a healthy economy in all four states through recreation, tourism, trade, and more. Regionally it powers a $20 million economy and supports 529,366 direct and indirect jobs and $8.9 billion in wages.
Delaware Nature Society’s (DelNature) mission is to connect people with the natural world and improve our environment through education, advocacy, and conservation. Founded in 1964, DelNature is a state affiliate for the National Wildlife Federation. We provide the tools for communities to take action and promote the health of the environment through land preservation, wildlife protection, watershed stewardship, and more. We manage over 2,000 acres of land and operate four educational sites: Ashland Nature Center, Abbott’s Mill Nature Center, DuPont Environmental Education Center, and Coverdale Farm Preserve.
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