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 RiverLink Newsletter
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October 2013 
 Mission Statement: RiverLink is a regional non-profit spearheading the economic and environmental donate image revitalization of the French Broad River and its tributaries as a place to work, live and play.
In This Issue
The exec speaks out
Volunteer opportunities
Woodfin Needs Your Help
November Bus Tour
Volunteer Appreciation Party
Feature Headline
NC Big Sweep
AmeriCorps 9/11 Day of Service
Education notes
Upcoming Events
River News
Fall Fiesta at AAR
Volunteer Spotlight
Wilma Dykeman Lecture Series
Wanted Dead
Trivia: Garbage Gyre
Water Pollution origins
Outdoor seminar
Big Sweep was cold, windy and rainy, but the French Broad River is cleaner thanks to our hardy volunteers!

From the exec's desk  

 

Greetings RiverLovers,


So many things going on in the river! Take a look at what's up this fall.

 

We are really excited about the possibility of a  quiet zone for the Lyman Street railroad crossing. The decibel levels of the passing trains hurt us in attracting housing on both ends  of the spectrum -- the upscale end and the affordable end -- because HUD won't consider grants or loans if the decibel ratings are too high. Click here for the rules about decibel levels.  And it will be difficult to sell or rent an expensive space with the current noise levels in the middle of the night.   

 

When RiverLink first proposed  a quiet zone about 6 years ago we asked for a quiet zone for all these crossings as a way to promote more residential and mixed-use development uses along our rivers, which are incredible multi-modal corridors as well. Bruce, one of  our best volunteers ever, produced this video showing decibel levels and how far the sound travels. First steps are always the most difficult -- watch this space and call me if you would like more information or to become involved.

 

We are still raising funds for the Reed Creek Greenway extension.  

Click here to see all of the wonderful folks who have bought a Deed of Support for $50 a foot with 100% of their charitable donation used to construct this next section of greenway. Buy your deed today.

 

Now that the heavy rafting season is over we decided it was a good time to examine with our outdoor recreation partners the potential pitfalls and liability issues of running a business, camp, retail or other store that focuses on outdoor adventure. Who better to advise us than Will Leverette, our own local whitewater legend and one of our paddle trail advisory board members who just happens to be one of the most knowledgeable people anywhere about risk management. Will is often called as an expert witness and is the Director of Risk Management for the Worldwide Outfitters & Guide Association in Salt Lake City. Reserve your seat for our free seminar on Friday, November 8, from 10 to 12 by calling us at 828-252-8474, ext. 10 or emailing us at information@riverlink.org. Seating is limited, so make your reservation today.

 

We are very excited to be helping the Town of Woodfin plan a new river access park on Monday, October 28 from 6:30 to 8. As part of its ongoing riverfront improvement efforts the Town of Woodfin is inviting the public to share its ideas and desires for the creation of a new riverside park on land donated by the Silverline Plastics Company expressly for this purpose. The meeting will take place at the Woodfin Town Hall at 90 Elk Mountain Road, Woodfin, NC 28804 (map). Light refreshments will be served.

 

Please bring or email to information@riverlink.org photos and or graphics of park amenities that you would like to see incorporated into the design of this new riverside space. Attendees are invited to collaborate on a collage of ideas and graphics for this exciting new development in Woodfin.

 

Mayor Jerry Vehaun says, "This is another exciting step forward in Woodfin's efforts to embrace and reclaim the French Broad River for our citizens' recreational, environmental and economic benefit."

 

RiverLink awarded Silverline Plastics a RiverBusiness Award in 2011 for their donation of this 4-acre parcel to the Town of Woodfin for public use and access to the river.

 photo Kioskdedication2Sept262013_zps178e8951.jpg

 

We have been busy in Woodfin as we installed the first of what will be 20 new information interpretive signs at river access points and paddle trail locations throughout the watershed last week and had a really nice dedication ceremony. Many thanks to all the elected officials in Woodfin  who turned out to celebrate with us. 

 

Back by popular demand is the Appalachian Oyster Roast Bash and Seafood Boil on Saturday, November 9, from 1 to 9 p.m. with the best fresh oysters, seafood and fish chowder you ever had on Blannahassett Island in Madison County at Rob Pulleyn's Marshall High Studios, or as we old timers call it Marshall High School! This year we are calling it the Harvest Season on a Mountain Lake.

 

The menu includes fresh oysters and steamed clams along with a traditional Native American mullet and mackerel roast. Local chefs will be on site serving a Deep South Boil and other dishes that highlight the seasonal harvests of NC fishermen and farms. Craft beer from NC breweries will be available along with day-long music performances by regional artists. Activities will take place both in and out of doors at Marshall High Studios and around the green spaces of the French Broad River. NC Fresh Catch Marshall is a part of the Hills to Holy Water Music Arts Tour, which has stops throughout the state.

 

We are encouraging all kinds of organizations from throughout the watershed to set up an information table at the event. If you are interested in having a 10 x 10 table outside send us a $50 check (PO Box 15488, Asheville, NC 28813) and we will sign you up for some space. Please bring your own tent, table and chairs to set up your information station.  Also please promote this fun and delicious event on your Facebook and blogs -- come one, come all!

 

Many thanks to everyone who took our wayfinding survey about honoring Wilma Dykeman and making it so much easier to get around the river and find the businesses along Riverside Drive, Lyman Street, Meadow Road and Swannanoa River Road. If you haven't taken the survey yet there is still time.  Click here to read the Board of Directors Resolution about Wayfinding and Street Names on the Wilma Dykeman RiverWay. After reading the resolution, please take this short survey.


Great news! You can help promote urban conservation, greenways, bike paths and storm water controls by purchasing a new RiverLink license plate. The state won't produce the license plate until we have 300 orders. So make your check out to RiverLink for $30 and once we hit 300 orders we will send the required one check to the NCDOT for your plate along with the enclosed form filled out by you with all your specific registration details. Oh yes, if you want a personalized RiverLink plate its $60. Here's the form

 

Many thanks to John Mac Kah who will donate a large part of the proceeds of his wonderful oil painting of Legdes Park. Click here to see it and see John at Cotton Mill Studios if you are interested in purchasing it.

 

See you on the river, and thanks for all you do,

 

Karen

 
RiverLink's Fall Volunteer Opportunities
 
  
Fall is definitely here!  When the weather gets cooler, we may not be able to get out on the river as much, but that doesn't mean that we run out of ways to get involved with RiverLink across Western North Carolina and the French Broad River watershed. 
 
Here are some upcoming volunteer opportunities in October and November:
 
Friday, October 11, in West Asheville, 1:00-4:00 p.m.--
RecoverLink Cleanup. Join us as we partner with Recover Brands for another cleanup with our roving Adopt-A-Stream team. 

 

This collaboration will bring together members of the community with the help of local businesses to remove and recycle waste from a riverside location in a fun and educational way. we will celebrate after the clean up with food and libations and a make your own t-shirts for participants.
 
 
Afterward, we'll be enjoying libations at the Wedge Brewing Company
 
Saturday, October 12 (Multiple Events) --
  • Carrier Park, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.-
    Volunteer to help CrossFit Pisgah put on the Beer City Beatdown, a series of judged Crossfit fitness and strength tests. Volunteers can contact Devin Gaynor, Volunteer Coordinator, at devin@crossfitpisgah.com to register.     
  • WNC Nature Center, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. -   We're participating in the 36th Annual HeyDayIf you have volunteered or attended at The WNC Nature Center's Hey Day in the past you are well aware what a fantastic event it is, if you have not experienced Hey Day now is the time to come see for yourself! RiverLink will set up a table and interact with the community through activities and displays organized by RiverLink's Education Coordinator. RiverLink needs volunteers from 10:00-1:00 or 1:00-4:00 for the Nature Center's event. Contact Lizzy at education@riverlink.org  
Tuesday, October 15- Wednesday Octber 16 at the RiverLink offices --

We have signs that will go up at various points along the French Broad River Paddle Trail, but before we install them, we'd like to get a layer of stain on them.  We'll work from 9 a.m. until noon on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Interested parties should contact project manager Mary Noel at

 

Thrusday, October 17, Spruce Pine--
RiverLink will be putting together a full day of watershed education at Riveside Park in Spruce Pine for eighth grade students. We are happy to have any volunteers interested in leading a learning station or helping with organization. If you have trained as a RiverLink Education volunteer or you are interested in getting involved with RiverLink and their education program Please contact Lizzy Stokes-Cawley at education@riverlink.org or by phone at (828) 253-6846 x 18.
 
Saturday, November 9, Blannahassett Island, 1 p.m-  9p.m. --
Celebrate Harvest Season with family and friends on a mountain island in Marshall, NC with fresh North Carolina seafood, live music and local craftbeer. NC Fresh Catch returns with RiverLink on Nov. 9th from 1-9pm to celebrate its second annual seafood, music and beer festival. 
Contact Jess at jess@riverlink.org.
 
Help The Town of Woodfin Plan a New River Access Park On  Monday, Oct. 28, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

 

As part of its ongoing riverfront improvement efforts the Town of Woodfin is pleased to invite the public to share its ideas and desires for the creation of a new riverside park on land donated by the Silverline Plastics Company expressly for this purpose. The meeting will take place at the Woodfin TownHall at 90 Elk Mountain Road, Woodfin, NC 28804 on Monday, October 28 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. and light refreshments will be served.

 

RiverLink is pleased to be assisting the Town in gathering information for this latest addition to the Town of Woodfin's riverside offerings.  Woodfin town planners will have on display base maps and other information for the public to write comments and draw their ideas on and will be available to provide additional information as needed.

 

Please feel free to bring or e-mail to information@riverlink.org photos and/or graphics of park amenities that you would like to see incorporated into the design of this new riverside space. Attendees are invited to collaborate on a collage of ideas and graphics for this exciting new development in Woodfin.

 

According to Mayor Jerry Vehaun, "This is another exciting step forward in Woodfin's efforts to embrace and reclaim the French Broad River for our citizens' recreational, environmental and economic benefit."

 

RiverLink awarded Silverline Plastic a RiverBusiness Award in 2011 for their donation of this 4 acre parcel to the Town of Woodfin for public use and access to the river. 

 

 

The red "X" marks the location of the meeting, the "A" balloon marks the location of the new river access and park. 

 

 

 

Join RiverLink for the November RiverFront Bus Tour 

 

Enjoy the beauty of Asheville in Autumn with RiverLink as we continue the RiverFront Bus Tour series. The next tour will be Thursday, November 21 ,  when the public is invited to tour the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers with RiverLink

 

The RiverLink Bus Tour offers answers about Asheville's past, present and future: What is the Wilma Dykeman RiverWay Plan and what does it hold for Asheville's future?  How did the Flood of 1916 change the river area landscape?

This is an opportunity to see the improvements that have occurred and hear what is coming over the next several months and years to make our rivers better places to work, live and play. You will learn some local history and visit some streets and neighborhoods you have never seen before.

 

The tour is free for RiverLink members but the tour cost for non-members is $20 per person.  Reservations are required. A final confirmation (or cancellation if necessary) will be sent the week of the tour.  Please go to www.riverlink.org/bustour.asp to reserve your seat today. 

 

 

 

  

What: RiverLink's Riverfront Bus Tour  

When: Thursday, November 21   11:45 -- 2 p.m.   

Where: Meet at the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce (36 Montford Avenue) 

 

Please Make Your Reservation by: 

Monday 11/18

 
A big Thank You! to all our volunteers 

At RiverLink, we often say that volunteers are the lifeblood of our organization. And it's true. Take a look around at the accomplishments of this organization and you will easily come to realize that our staff of four full-timers and two AmeriCorps members couldn't possibly do this on our own. In April of this year, in an effort to both thank and recruit volunteers, we had a pre-RiverMusic gathering at the RiverLink Sculpture and Performance Plaza complete with beer, hamburgers and hotdogs, and other cooking-out goodies. 

Loyal volunteer Lynn Rapp came to the party dressed as a pirate

 

On Sept. 19, we held a post-RiverMusic Volunteer Appreciation Party at the Plaza to say thanks to all the volunteers who came out for RiverMusic and RiverFest and helped with our summer cleanups and our education events and came to our special events committee meetings and the French Broad River Paddle Trail volunteers and the rest of the folks who help us make the French Broad River and her watershed a better place for everyone to live, work and play.

 

If you didn't make the Volunteer Appreciation Party and you helped us with our mission at some point this year, we'd like to say "Thank you!" If you didn't volunteer this year, make life a little more interesting by coming out with us sometime. We have volunteer orientation sessions the second Wednesday of each month, but volunteers are welcome anytime. Thanks again!

 

RiverLink and NC Fresh Catch Festival Brings Fresh NC Seafood, Craft Beer And Music To Blannahassett Island In Marshall  

 

Come celebrate Harvest Season with family and friends on a mountain island in Marshall, NC with fresh North Carolina seafood, live music and local craft beer. NC Fresh Catch returns with RiverLink on Nov. 9th from 1-9pm to celebrate its second annual seafood, music and beer festival. Menu items include oysters, clams, smoked fish, a Deep South boil by local chefs and more. Craft beer from NC breweries will be on site along with day long music performances by regional artists.

 

Cost: Payment required - $6adv./$8d.o.s -FREE admission with advance ticket purchases -Food & Drink tickets sold separately inside the event. Click here for advance tix and more information.
 
This was one of our most popular volunteer opportunities last year, and we'll be needing volunteers again. Please contact RiverLink's Jess Peete at jess@riverlink.org and come hang out with us for a rollickin' good time!
 
Despite the Rain, River Cleanup a Sweeping Success 


Saturday, Sept. 21 was the 26th annual North Carolina Big Sweep. Groups from all over the state participated in the largest river, roadside and stream cleanup of the year. Volunteers from the mountains to the coast were cleaning up years of trash and neglect to better the health of our environment. 

RiverLink also had a walking team that focused its endeavors on the Ross Creek Watershed. The group retrieved 11 tires as well as 63 plastic milk crates!



An award-winning 501c3 nonprofit, North Carolina Big Sweep's purpose is to rid our environment of litter by promoting environmental education and coordinating an annual statewide cleanup.

 
RiverLink, AmeriCorps clean the French Broad

As part of the 9/11 Day of Service, RiverLink and AmeriCorps Project Conserve teamed up for a Sept. 6 cleanup of the French Broad River. The group hauled a small mountain of trash and unusual items out of a stretch of the river near downtown Asheville, including huge tires, large pieces of Styrofoam, and more. Using canoes donated by Dave Donnell of the Asheville Outdoor Center on Amboy Road, the 30 AmeriCorps members floated to 144 Riverside in the River Arts District, cleaning as they went. 

RiverLink is no stranger to cleanups of the French Broad. "We try to get into this part the river every chance we get for cleaning," said Dave Russell of RiverLink. "This stretch of the French Broad is very urban and tends to need more attention than its rural sections." Located in the River Arts District of Asheville, RiverLink is a regional non-profit spearheading the economic and environmental revitalization of the French Broad River and its tributaries as a place to live, work and play.

The cleanup was part of an orientation for new members of AmeriCorps Project Conserve program,which will pair 32 young people with environmental agencies across Western North Carolina for the next 11 months.
 
AmeriCorps Project Conserve is administered by Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy and funded by the Corporation for National and Community Service, the North Carolina Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service in the office of Governor Pat McCrory, and the critical support of its host sites and community partners.
 

Education this September at RiverLink

 

On the banks of the Toe River, knee deep in Cane Creek, even in the classroom, RiverLink's education program has reached out to students throughout our region to promote the importance of the French Broad watershed this September.

 

The RiverLink education program connected with Cane Creek Middle school on Oct. 2 as the students focused on their hydrology unit. Experiencing the hydrology subject firsthand the students braved chilly waters to explore the creek on their school's property. The eighth graders worked with kick nets to reveal the presence of an amazing array of macroinvertebrates, as well as crayfish, salamanders and fish.

 

Cane Creek is not the only school to get out and about studying the rivers and watersheds of our community with RiverLink this September. The Toes in the Toes Watershed Discovery Festival brought students from several school districts and two counties to the Toe River where students participated in studying the watershed through the Enviroscape learning model, macroinvertebrate studies and art projects during a full day devoted to the river.

 

RiverLink's educational program has gotten off to a great start this year. Environmental educational programs seek to get students outside and involved in their surroundings to create memorable experiences and lastly impressions of the importance of our rivers.

 

If your school or community group is interested in scheduling a program with RiverLink please contact RiverLink's Education Coordinator. Additionally we are looking for education volunteers to help out with some of our bigger programs this fall, if you are interested in getting involved please email our Education Coordinator Lizzy at education@riverlink.org.

  Photo: Several Dobsonfly Larva, Dragonfly Nymphs, Cranefly Larva, Water Pennies and one immature Spotted Yellow Perch caught by the eighth graders of Cane Creek Middle School in Cane Creek on Oct. 2, 2013.

 

Upcoming Events


Wednesday, October 9, at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the RiverLink offices --  
Volunteer orientation sessions. Contact Dave Russell at 252-8474, ext. 11 and become involved in the evolution of the river and learn more about RiverLink and join Jim Stokely to learn more about his mother, Wilma Dykeman
PLEASE RSVP by 10/8
 
Saturday, October 12, at Carrier Park, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.- 
Volunteer to help CrossFit Pisgah put on the Beer City Beatdown, a series of judged Crossfit fitness and strength tests. Volunteers can contact Devin Gaynor, Volunteer Coordinator, at devin@crossfitpisgah.com to register.

 

Saturday, October 12, 1 p.m. -- 5 p.m. at Asheville Adventure Rentals, 704 Riverside Drive(map) -- Fall Fiesta. Special sales, beer, food, a good time!  
 
Monday, October 28, 6:30 to 8 pm at the Woodfin Town Hall at 90 Elk Mountain Road, Woodfin -Help RiverLink and the Town of Woodfin plan a new river access park. Share your ideas and desires for the creation of a new riverside park on land donated by the Silverline Plastics Company.

  

Saturday, November 9, Blannahassett Island, 1 p.m- 9p.m. --
Celebrate Harvest Season with family and friends on a mountain island in Marshall, NC with fresh North Carolina seafood, live music and local craftbeer. NC Fresh Catch returns with RiverLink on Nov. 9th from 1-9pm to celebrate its second annual seafood, music and beer festival. 


Wednesday, November 13, at 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the RiverLink offices --  
Volunteer orientation sessions. Contact volunteer@riverlink.org to become involved in the evolution of the river and learn more about RiverLink and join Jim Stokely to learn more about his mother, Wilma Dykeman
PLEASE RSVP by 11/11

Thursday, November 21, 11:45 a.m.-2 p.m. --  
Experience the Riverfront magic firsthand! The RiverLink bus tour meets at the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce at 11:45 a.m. 
 
 

River News   

 

Two upcoming sessions will focus on starting a business along the French Broad watershed

 

Brevard prepares to tap river if needed

 

River Legacy

 

Sierra Nevada begins test brewing at Mills River

 

Workers begin cleaning up tire pile on French Broad

 

Proposed NC reservoir creates political storm 

 

Black Mountain Greenway moves forward

 

RiverLink and Americorps Project Conserve Team up to clean up French Broad

 

State returns EPA grants to study fracking

 

NCDOT awards $1.2 million grant to Hendersonvillle to extend Oklawaha Greenway

 

Fall Fiesta at AAR

Join us Oct. 12, at Asheville Adventure Rentals (map), for a day of savings on your next kayak and/or equipment needs. New and used boats available by Bellyak, recreation boats by Feel Free and Pyranha whitewater boats, Bic Stand Up Boards, a Winter Paddling gear review, store sales and BEER. Sale starts at 1 and ends at 5. Revenue from beer sales to benefit Riverlink. Call them at 828-505-7371 for more information.

 

Volunteer Spotlight 

  Cherise Medley

   

As a new volunteer to RiverLink this year, Cherise was very excited to be able to use her love of the outdoors and music to finally give back to the community. Originally from Dayton, Ohio; Cherise moved to the Asheville/Hendersonville area when she was 11 years old. 

 
"I fell in love with the mountains and have stayed in the area since, with the exception of my college years". Although she studied to be an elementary school teacher, Cherise now does technical support for the "world's largest keycard manufacturer", PLI. 


According to Cherise, "Being a single mom to two teenage boys, made it difficult for me to volunteer in the past, but this summer I was super fortunate to be able to participate in all off the RiverMusic's summer concerts - helping the river, live music and meeting tons of new people, what could be better! Now that the "volunteer bug" has me, I look forward to working at many more of the wonderful events RiverLink sponsors...what teenage boys???" 

 
Wilma Dykeman lecture series continues through October at UNCA    

Announcing a lecture series this fall at UNC-Asheville's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI - formerly the Center for Creative Retirement). All presentations will take place on Sunday afternoons from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. in the Mannheimer Room (map).

 

 

October 6: Wilma Dykeman as Environmentalist

Chapter on pollution in the French Broad River seven years before Rachel Carson's Silent Spring. Environmental themes throughout her novels, fight against Pigeon River pollution, public speaking throughout the region and nation. Lecture by Viki Rouse, Associate Professor of English, Walters State Community College, Morristown, Tennessee.

 

October 20: Wilma Dykeman as Teacher

UT professor of Appalachian literature and creative writing for 21 years, founder of the James R. Stokely Institute for Liberal Arts Education at UT (an early summer institute for high school teachers).

Lecture by Martha Gill, retired teacher.

 

November 3: Wilma Dykeman as Novelist

The Tall Woman (has sold a quarter-million copies), its sequel The Far Family, and her last published novel Return the Innocent Earth. Lecture by Jim Cole Overholt, retired teacher.

 

November 10: Wilma Dykeman as Traveler

Where she went, why she went, how she saw, her journals. Lecture by Jim Stokely, one of Wilma Dykeman's two sons.

 
 
Usually, we focus on an invasive plant species. However, this month, we're mixing it up and featuring an invasive animal species. We certainly don't want the Lionfish to go extinct- we're merely are pointing out a fish that is in thriving in a non-native environment. 
 
  Lionfish
 
Scientific Name: Pterois volitans
AKA: scorpion fish, zebra fish, fire fish, turkey fish, peacock fish

Appearance: Lionfish have cycloid scales along with distinctive brown or maroon, and white strips covering the head and body. Their heads are large, roughly 1/3 to 1/2 the standard length. They have several protruding head spines or fleshy tentacles located above their eyes and below their mouth. The caudal fin is rounded or squared, rather than forked. Their pectoral fins are arranged in a fan-like order. Lionfish have a strong dorsal fin and a sharp anal fin, both of which have venomous spines protruding them. Juveniles may be as small as 1 inch and adults may grow as large as 18.

Habitat: Lionfish can live in most marine habitat types found in warm marine waters of the tropics. For example, hard bottoms, mangroves, coral and artificial reefs, and seagrasses are all suitable environments for Lionfish. They are also known to reside from depths anywhere between 1 and 1,000 feet.

Ecological Threat: Because these fish are not native to the Atlantic water they have no natural predators and can cause permanent damage to our marine life, and the balance of the food chain. Not only do Lionfish lack predators here, but they serve as great ones. They are now one of the top predators in many Atlantic reefs, and their consumption of ecologically as well as economically important species is causing a serious problem with the outbreak of this fish. 

Control: Some areas suffering from the invasive species are encouraging people to hunt and market the fish to cope with their overpopulation. 

Native Alternatives: Japan, Micronesia, Australia, French Polynesia, Australia

 

Trivia: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

 

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, or the world's largest landfill, is a result of the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre, a spiral of currents created by a high-pressure system of air currents. This current's clockwise rotation sucks in garbage from all over and traps it, leading to one big collective pile of pollution from all around the world. Here are some more interesting facts about this ever growing gyre of waste...

  • The gyre has more recently produced two large masses of accumulating trash, these are known as the Western and Eastern Pacific Garbage Patches
  • Most of the trash is made up of plastic, which is not biodegradable meaning it will never go away
  • About 80% of debris in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch comes from land
  • 10% of marine litter is free-floating fishing nets
  • 9% of fish found in the Garbage Patch had plastic waste in their stomachs
  • According to scientist, Charles Moore, garbage island will likely double within the ten years
  • 7 billion pounds of non recyclable plastic created each year
  • The northern garbage patch alone is twice the size of Texas
  • In some parts these patches can reach 9 feet deep of waste
  • Many different marine life species consume the small broken down pieces of plastic, which has already led to a decline in marine life, specifically species that live in shallower waters
  • Scientific research has shown that the chemicals in plastic have been traced back to people living on Americas, Europe, and Asia
  • Rivers and streams are often a gateway for garbage to enter into the ocean without humans directly polluting the water
  • Sunlight breaks down floating debris causing the surface water to thicken with suspended plastic bits. This process is called Photodegradation.
 
Water Pollution: Where Does It Originate? 
Written By: Marci Schrock



Although some of us don't care to admit it, human activities are one of the biggest contributors to water pollution. But what is even more shocking is many of us don't know what we are doing to pollute the waters. 
 
Several of these leading causes are unintentionally committed. Over a long period of urban development, farming, industry and man-made pollutants, such as sewage from our very homes, have been disposed into our waterways.

Another major contributor is storm-water runoff. An excessive irrigation of water through
our lawns, sidewalks, and parking lots picks up fertilizers and pesticides, even motor oil
and heavy metals, dragging them into waterways. In fact, about 80 to 95 percent of the
heavy metals that enter Florida waters come from storm water. This means that those of
us who believe we are not part of the pollution problem because we have never directly
disposed of harmful substances into a body of water are no longer just innocent
bystanders, but most likely contributors as well.

Wastewater produced from our sinks, dishwashers, clothes washers, and toilets flow
into sewer pipes everyday, entering a treatment plant. This treats the water, removing
harmful organisms and substances, making it safe for non-potable or non-drinking
needs. Use of 'reclaimed' water is an environmentally responsible action, however efforts of water conservation are still very much necessary in order to limit the amount of water being disposed from our homes.

Septic tanks, when not properly installed or located can add to the problem of water
pollution by allowing waste to contaminate nearby surface waters or groundwater. Also,
when septic tanks do not dispose of the sewage at the same pace as it is being added
to the system contamination can further. Thus, any improvements reducing the amount
of incoming water or quality of waste water will increase the longevity of the system.

As you can see there are lots of different factors that play into the pollution of our water.
It is easy to believe if you are not directly participating in pollution than you are not a
part of the problem. However, there are lots of things to be improved that may not seem
related to the problem. Any action to limit your output of water and its quality will help
eliminate the rising pollution!
 
Paddling Legend Will Leverette WIll Lead Recreation & Outdoor Business Risks Seminar

Join RiverLink and outdoor recreation risk expert Will Leverette on Friday November 8th from 10 to 12 am at RiverLink's Warehouse Studios, 170 Lyman Street in the heart of the River Arts District for this free seminar. Seating is limited and reservations are a must so make yours by emailing us at information@riverlink.org or calling us at 828-2520-8474, ext 10.

Increasingly WNC is known as "the premier outdoor adventure destination" pumping millions of dollars into our local economy as well as providing jobs and a high quality of life for our residents. The risks of running any business are numerous. However, the risks of operating outdoor and recreation oriented businesses are both common to all businesses as well as unique to the outdoor recreation industry - come and learn from the expert.

Will Leverette is the author of " The History of Paddling in Western North Carolina" and has been the paddling whitewater coach at Warren Wilson College since 1997. In addition Will is the Director of the Risk Management Department and Director of the East Coast Branch for the Worldwide Outfitter and Guide Association in Salt Lake City, UT. Will often represents the association at professional trade association meeting. He has been called upon frequently to conduct accident investigations and assist claims departments with conflict resolution and settlement negotiations on serious accidents. He has designed policy applications and reviewed and written liability release forms. Will has also designed and implemented a nationwide inspections program for outdoor businesses. 

RiverLink's economic initiatives for the French Broad River watershed are guided by its Wilma Dykeman RiverWay Plan and include promoting recreation in all its forms from manufacturing to retail, and a host of outdoor activities. The Wilma Dykeman RiverWay economic initiates includes health and wellness and the arts as authentic traditional industries indigenous to WNC and the French Broad River watershed.
 
Contact Information
RiverLink
PO Box 15488
Asheville, NC 28813
828-252-8474
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RiverLink | PO Box 15488 | Asheville | NC | 28813