Map of the Catawba River

The Catawba River is approximately 220 miles long and rises in the Blue Ridge Mountains in western McDowell County, North Carolina and flows through the Charlotte metropolitan area, and finally ends in Lake Wateree, South Carolina. The river provides water and electricity to approximately 2 million people through 11 hydropower plants, 4 coal plants, and 2 nuclear power facilities. Unfortunately, the rapid population growth in the basin has put severe pressures on the Catawba River: water quality at many locations in the basin is impaired and shortages of water are becoming increasingly common due to drought, growing demands for water, and transfers of water out of the basin. As a result of these problems, American Rivers listed the Catawba-Wateree River as among the most endangered rivers in the United States in 2008 and 2013 (American Rivers). 



About the Catawba-Wateree River