James River gets good health grade

Published 2:17 pm Thursday, October 22, 2015

RICHMOND — The James River Association’s (JRA) recently released biennial State of the James report card — a comprehensive assessment of the health of the river — found that the overall health of the James has improved from a grade of “C+” in 2013 to a “B-”.

“This represents a 4 percent increase over two years, up from 57 percent to 61 percent and the first such report to give the river’s health an overall grade in the ‘B’ range,” noted a JRA press release. 

“Having the grade move into the ‘B’ range is a major milestone and reflects the tremendous progress that has been made since the James was considered one of the most polluted rivers in the nation four decades ago,” said Bill Street, the JRA’s CEO. “This result really highlights the improvements that have resulted from Virginia’s investments in cleaning up its waters, particularly in wastewater pollution controls. The benefits of these investments will ripple throughout not only the river but also the communities along it.”

Email newsletter signup

The State of the James report is designed to examine the status and trends of indicators in four categories — fish and wildlife, habitat, pollution reductions and protection and restoration actions that are interconnected and build on one another to achieve a healthy James River.