Riverkeeper maintains an enforcement presence on the Hudson River, patrolling the length and breadth of the estuary from south of the New York Harbor to north of the federal dam at Troy. The patrol boat, the R. Ian Fletcher, is a 36-foot wooden vessel similar in design to a traditional lobster boat. Riverkeeper has modified the boat to enable it to best serve its mission as a watchdog vessel, a platform for scientific research and an ambassador for the river.
John Lipscomb has been captain of the R. Ian Fletcher since 2000. From March through December each year, he travels approximately 6,000 nautical miles on the Hudson while conducting regular pollution patrols, providing support for scientific studies that advance understanding of the Hudson ecosystem, running Riverkeeper’s Water Quality Testing Program and bringing state and regional decision-makers, the media, and community stakeholders out on the river. On these trips Captain Lipscomb shares his deep knowledge of the river – its wildlife, critical habitat zones, pollution sources and water quality management issues – with his passengers.
The boat program is critical to Riverkeeper’s work and unique in the role it serves on the Hudson River.
Receive updates from the patrol boat, visit the Riverkeeper Boat Blog