Protect, Preserve, and Restore the greater Youghiogheny River Watershed image

Protect, Preserve, and Restore the greater Youghiogheny River Watershed

$40,513 raised

$50,000 goal

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Become a Member Today!

Your donation to the Mountain Watershed Association is one of the most powerful means for you to support the protection, preservation, and restoration of the Laurel Highlands, specifically Indian Creek and the greater Youghiogheny River watersheds.

Your past investment in the area and our work has enabled MWA to:

  • Restore over 33 miles of Indian Creek, turning 70% of impaired water into restored streams
  • Secure Exceptional Value status, reserved for Pennsylvania's cleanest streams, for Stony Run in the Indian Creek watershed. Champion Creek is being considered for re-designation as a naturally reproducing trout stream, which can afford more protection to the Champion Creek watershed.
  • Expand the Indian Creek Valley Trail, this year we are starting construction of the Steyer Bridge
  • Conduct weekly E. coli testing at popular swimming locations around the watershed so you know where it is safe to splash, swim, or paddle
  • Conduct quarterly drinking water quality testing at popular roadside springs in the area so you know which springs are safe to use
  • Complete the updated Indian Creek River Conservation Plan, a "go-to" document for preservation and protection within the Indian Creek watershed
  • Begin work on the Upper Youghiogheny River Conservation Plan: Part 1, Dunbar Creek to Headwaters
  • Host Spring and Fall volunteer river clean-ups on the Yough River in West Newton and Connellsville and on the Casselman River in Meyersdale
  • Review thousands of pages of permit documents and submit in-depth written comments to suggest improvements for matters ranging from strip mines, air permits for power plants, drilling plans for pipelines, and water discharges with potential to pollute streams

About Us

Mountain Watershed Association is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization with the mission to protect, preserve and restore the Youghiogheny River watershed and its broader communities through conservation, recreation, education, and advocacy. Our organization is unique in that we pursue on-the-ground restoration of past environmental damages while we advocate to protect the watershed from new sources of pollution, primarily caused by fossil fuel development. We achieve our mission through a variety of initiatives including abandoned mine drainage remediation, water quality monitoring, trail development, educational programming, grassroots organizing, and legal advocacy.

Our History

Like many grassroots groups, Mountain Watershed Association began its life around a kitchen table. The organization was founded in 1994 to oppose an underground coal mine proposal in the Indian Creek Watershed in the Laurel Highlands of Southwestern Pennsylvania. MWA’s input and organized opposition resulted in the denial of the permit. MWA’s board of directors and dedicated community members realized that to restore the watershed to a viable community, they would have to address the legacy of more than 150 years of extraction and disinvestment in our rural Appalachian region. Since then, MWA has restored more than 70 percent of the Indian Creek Watershed and prevented countless sources of additional pollution in the broader Youghiogheny River Watershed.

Our Values

MWA aims to empower communities both locally and downstream to transition towards sustainable, resilient, equitable economies and healthy environments where all beings mutually support each other. We work towards a world where we all act as if what affects one of us affects all of us, because that’s how watersheds work.