About BBWK

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Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper defends, protects, and preserves Biscayne Bay and surrounding waters through citizen involvement and community action. BBWK works to ensure swimmable, drinkable, fishable water in Biscayne Bay for all.

Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper (BBWK) is a Miami-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization that advocates for Biscayne Bay, its watershed, and its wildlife. Our goal is to educate citizens about the vital role of Biscayne Bay in Miami’s clean-water economy, and to empower them to take an active role in our community’s decision-making.  We hope to ensure a clean and vibrant Biscayne Bay and coastal culture for generations to come.

Launched in 2011, BBWK is the first Waterkeeper in South Florida and is the only advocacy organization solely dedicated to protecting Biscayne Bay and its surrounding watershed. In the few years since our founding, BBWK has become a leading advocate for Biscayne Bay and a powerful voice for sustainable development. We achieve our goals through citizen-driven education, community outreach and legal advocacy programs.

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Biscayne Bay is an economically essential body of water at the center of one of the fastest growing cities
in the nation. The Bay fuels a tourism-based economy attracted to its clean water, pristine beaches, spectacular diving, and unparalleled fishing.

The Bay is also an ecological and aesthetic jewel, home to coral reefs, seagrass meadows and mangroves forests, and over a dozen threatened, endangered or otherwise protected marine species such as manatees, turtles, and dolphins.

Miami-Dade County residents and visitors spend 65.5 million person-days recreating on or around Biscayne Bay. (A person-day is a one person spending most of a day on or near the water.)  These activities include diving, fishing, swimming, sailing, snorkeling, picnicking, and viewing the Bay from the shore.

Annually, recreation on the Bay contributes $3.8 billion in additional County productivity, provides $2.1 billion directly to County residents, creates 57,100 jobs and produces $257 million in tax revenues.  This recreation-related activity has grown steadily since 1980 as well.


BBWK is a registered member of the internationally recognized Waterkeeper Alliance and is one of nearly 200 independent Waterkeeper organizations working for clean water around the world. The origins of the Waterkeeper movement date back to 1966, when commercial and recreational fishermen came together to save the Hudson River in New York. Their outspoken, citizen-led advocacy ensured that laws were enforced and that their river, livelihood and the health of their families were protected. In 1999, Waterkeeper Alliance was founded to support these Waterkeeper groups. Today, Waterkeeper Alliance is one of the world’s fastest growing environmental organizations, with nearly 200 Waterkeeper organizations patrolling rivers, lakes and coastal waterways on six continents. BBWK is the first Waterkeeper program established in South Florida.

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