Clean Ocean Action



Through the Rally for the Waterways program, Clean Ocean Action works to improve degraded water quality throughout New Jersey and New York coast waters. 

Clean Ocean Action's Rally for the Waterways is an innovative and strategic approach to address pollution sources and improve water quality in coastal watersheds in the New York - New Jersey region.  

This program is a collaborative "find it, fix it, no blame game" approach to help local communities and municipalities find, and eliminate sources of non-point sources pollution, throughout their watersheds.

Non-point source (NPS) pollution is the leading cause of water quality impairment and comes from many different sources unlike point sources of pollution. Stormwater runoff is the primary contributor of non-point source pollution in waterways. Rainfall and snowmelt over land carry various pollutants, such as pathogens, nutrients and chemicals. Eventually these pollutants find their way into receiving waters, including fresh and coastal waterbodies.  

Pathogen pollution of coastal waters from non-point sources adversely affects recreational water quality, shellfish harvesting, and has impacts on human health and other aquatic life.  

Non-point source pathogen pollution that affects waterways can be as small as improperly disposed of dog waste or as large as damaged sanitary infrastructure. This is one of the reasons why tracking non-point source pollution can be a challenge! When sewer lines and other associated infrastructure is damaged or aged, it can lead to sanitary sources leaking into stormwater lines or into small water bodies (such as creeks) which flows downstream into larger bodies of water such as rivers and ultimately the ocean! Other sources of this type of pollution can also come from poorly managed domesticated animal waste, from small household pets to large farm animals. It is important to follow best practices when disposing of any animal waste! Wild animals can also contribute to pathogen pollution, especially large congregations of migratory waterfowl, which can be managed through abatement and control programs. 

COA's Rally for the Waterways currently focuses on pathogen pollution track down including human sources in coastal watershed in Monmouth and Ocean Counties. 

By looking for the bacteria associated with this type of pollution and identifying areas with high levels of pathogens, we can find areas of concern and bring communities and municipalities together to help identify and eliminate possible sources of pollution! 

Community involvement is essential for Rally for the Water Ways, as COA uses the power of local community scientists to collect water samples for analysis in our Rally programs! We want to empower community members to help preserve and improve their local water bodies! By working together, we can improve water quality, not just for the people that use and enjoy their local water bodies, but also for the wildlife and ecosystems that depend on them for survival! 

If you would like to learn more about each of our active Rally programs or are interested in ways you can get involved, please click the links below! For any additional questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to 


Rally for the Two Rivers

Rally for Barnegat Bay

Rally for Deal Lake


49 Avenel Blvd.
Long Branch, NJ 07740

Field Office:

Gateway National Recreation Area
Sandy Hook, New Jersey

Voice: (732) 872-0111
FAX: (732) 872-8041

Candid/Guidestar "Essential nonprofit data, tools, and resources"

Charity Navigator, "Your Guide to Intelligent Giving"