Formerly diverse and abundant freshwater species are highly imperiled, with higher extinction rates than many other taxonomic groups worldwide. In the 50 years since passage of the US Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, wild and scenic rivers (WSRs) have contributed significantly to the conservation of native aquatic biodiversity as well as to the conservation and restoration of essential habitats. WSRs also have limitations. Conditions that impair aquatic species are not fully mitigated by WSR designation, although there are ways to reduce these limitations.
Rothlisberger, John D.; Heartsill Scalley, Tamara; Thurow, Russell F. 2017. The role of wild and scenic rivers in the conservation of aquatic biodiversity. International Journal of Wilderness. 23(2): 49-63, 72.