The Mississippi River is America’s river highway – working hard to transport the bounties of America’s heartland around the world. Nearly 20 million people rely on the river for their drinking water.
But the Mississippi is also in peril. Climate change and some farming practices are taking a heavy toll on the river and its communities. Severe weather is causing more intense flooding. For decades, excess fertilizer has run off farms and into the Mississippi – where water becomes toxic. Deforestation has made the problem worse. And coastal land loss threatens life on the Gulf Coast.
The Mississippi’s challenges extend from the river’s headwaters to its mouth. So we need a ‘whole river’ approach to finding solutions. The foundation’s efforts build on collaboration with diverse partners elevating the voices of the people working to improve the health of the river and its water. Everyone needs to be at the table to build solutions that benefit all.
We’re working with farmers to improve how we grow our food. Supporting solutions that reduce runoff and improve soil health. Nature also provides a blueprint for a healthy river and thriving communities. This includes restoring natural floodplains and wetlands. And helping reforest lands with marginal farming value. On the Gulf Coast, natural infrastructure projects are building new land.
We believe these solutions can help ensure a clean and resilient river. Where people and nature thrive together.
Americans are united to keep our rivers and streams clean, while also supporting farmers. Voters say it is very important to adopt sustainable farming practices to support clean water and reduce air pollution.
- 84% of voters agree that “we need to do more to maintain soil health and water quality so we can feed future generations.”
- Almost two-thirds of voters want the federal government to encourage sustainable farming practices.
- 83% of voters agree that farmers have a responsibility to reduce harmful pollutants from reaching U.S. rivers, lakes and oceans.
March 10, 2020I work in conservation to help Midwestern farming communities – including the one where I grew up.
January 14, 2021In the Mississippi River Basin, we need to grow more than just corn and soybeans
August 25, 2022Morning Consult conducted a survey, on behalf of the Walton Family Foundation, with additional analysis from Beck Research, that illustrated most Americans agree that protecting agriculture, food, soil health, and water quality now and in the future is essential
September 2, 2021Interactive maps highlight impacts on surface water and groundwater in Upper Mississippi River Basin