Officials push to end Potomac River swimming ban as Clean Water Act turns 50 | WDVM25 and DCW50

WASHINGTON (WDVM) – 2022 marks 50 years since the Clean Water Act. Representative Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) joined the Potomac Riverkeeper Network at The Wharf on Tuesday, March 22 to mark progress.

Much progress has been made in purifying the natural water sources around the District of Columbia in the last five decades, but Rep. Norton and Riverkeepers are pushing for more. Specifically, officials want the swimming ban lifted. Dean Naujoks, Potomac Riverkeeper, said: “This river should not only be for sailors but all Americans. Everyone who wants to use it should have the opportunity to come and fish and use this river and that is the goal and that we fighting for every single day. ”

Weekly bacterial monitoring did not begin until 2019. According to Naujoks, the water at The Wharf and Tidal Basin tests is 85 percent. Water in National Harbor passes tests 90 percent of the time. Other parts of the river, such as around Georgetown, pass tests 50 to 60 percent. Naujoks said these levels show a huge amount of progress in clearing the waterway and should serve as a reason to allow the public to swim in the water.

Water samples are taken every Wednesday in several parts of the river, and the results are published in the mobile app “Swim Guide.”

Leave a Comment