W.A.T.E.R. at Mason Summer 2022 Seminar Series - Session 5
Jul 1, 2022, 3:00 - 4:30 PM
Potomac Science Center & Virtual
WATER (Watershed and Aquatic Teams for Education and Research) at Mason 2022 Summer Seminar Series
Phillip Musegass, Vice President of Programs and Litigation, Potomac Riverkeeper Network
Phillip Musegass is Vice President of Programs and Litigation. In this role, Phillip works with the Network’s Riverkeepers to develop and carry out their clean water advocacy and grassroots campaigns and serves as PRKN’s in-house counsel on all litigation matters with our experienced and passionate outside counsel. Since joining PRKN in the Spring of 2015, Phillip has led the team to several critical victories for the Potomac watershed, including federal consent decrees with polluters in Maryland that prevented millions of pounds of pollution from being dumped in the Potomac, and passage of legislation in Virginia to address untreated sewage discharges and leaks from toxic coal ash ponds into the river. Prior to joining Potomac Riverkeeper Network, Phillip was the Hudson River Program Director at Riverkeeper in New York for ten years, leading efforts to reduce sewage pollution, clean up historic industrial sites and bring enforcement actions to protect the Hudson River. During his tenure as Director, Hudson Riverkeeper brought successful actions against dozens of polluters, including ExxonMobil for its historic Greenpoint oil spill and numerous concrete companies, scrapyards and other waterfront sites whose operations violated the Clean Water Act and other environmental laws. Phillip received a J.D. with honors from Pace University School of Law, and a B.A. (magna cum laude) in Geography from the University of Washington.
Abstract: The Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers figure prominently in our nation’s history, from the time of George Washington’s early explorations upriver to the Allegheny highlands, to the Potomac being called out as a “national disgrace” by President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s, following years of industrial pollution and neglect. Our recent history has seen a resurgence of public interest in returning to the river to live, work and recreate. Potomac Riverkeeper was founded in 2000 to be the voice and advocate for the river and its users, and we expanded our work to the Shenandoah River in 2008. As Potomac Riverkeeper Network, we are focused on addressing both legacy and emerging threats to our rivers, utilizing citizen science, grassroots advocacy and legal enforcement to protect the public’s right to clean water. Phillip Musegaas will talk about the Network’s current Campaigns, including work on plastics pollution and freshwater mussels, and our vision for the Potomac of the future.