Protecting Land & Water | Advocacy | Balanced Growth

I don’t have to tell you how much things have changed these past few weeks.

But some things have stayed the same. Our land trust remains committed to protecting the Upstate’s critical lands through voluntary conservation easements, and our regular season of stewardship — the annual monitoring of land protected by a conservation easement — has continued, albeit with a few adjustments.

In this time of great uncertainty, I wanted to share some more good news from Upstate Forever’s land trust: We recently completed five conservation projects, totaling 624 acres of land that is now protected forever.

  • In Union County, Upstate Forever has helped protect two wetland mitigation projects totaling over 352 acres, which will include wetland restoration and preservation projects providing water quality benefits to Gilkey Creek and the Broad River.

  • Further, another recent Union County project protects more than 161 acres and over a mile of streambank along Fairforest Creek. This area of Union County is very active with existing, ongoing, and future projects targeting the wide expanses of the Fairforest Creek floodplain.

  • We also were successful in helping a private landowner expand protections to the historic Mills-Screven Plantation outside of the Town of Tryon, North Carolina. This 75-acre property includes bluffs overlooking the North Pacolet River and other easements stewarded by Upstate Forever. While we typically focus our conservation efforts in the ten-county Upstate region, this property protects headwaters that contribute to watersheds in the Upstate. Ultimately, the property will be owned by an Upstate Forever conservation partner, Conserving Carolina.

  • Most recently, Upstate Forever permanently protected Kings Mountain Preserve, a 36-acre property in Cherokee County (pictured above). This peaceful forested oasis will be home to the state's newest green burial cemetery.

Because of your support , Upstate Forever protects more than 23,500 acres across the ten-county Upstate region. We hope to share more conservation successes with you soon!

Stay safe out there,
Scott Park
Glenn Hilliard Director of Land Conservation
Upstate Forever
More information, news & updates

Do you own land you’d like to protect forever? 
Our Land Trust helps landowners preserve their legacy through voluntary conservation easements. You continue to own the land, and you may realize significant tax benefits. Funding may also be available. For more information, email Scott Park, Glenn Hilliard Director of Land Conservation, at [email protected].

Tune in for Conversations with Conservationists
This weekly webinar series coordinated by our partners in the South Carolina Conservation Coalition will give you the opportunity to learn more about conservation issues in SC from the comfort of your home. Upcoming webinars will cover topics include Protecting the Landscapes We Love (Tuesday, April 14 at 11:30 am | Register here), as well as two featuring Upstate Forever staff: SC State Water Plan Update (Tuesday, April 28 | Time and registration link to come) hosted by UF’s Clean Water Advocate Megan Chase and Commercial Composting and Waste Reduction (Thursday, May 7 | Time and registration link to come), featuring Director of Energy & State Policy Shelley Robbins. You can view a complete list of the series and additional details on the Upstate Forever blog.

Meet some of our newest team members
While our team has been adjusting to a new normal working from home these past few weeks, we've eagerly welcomed some new coworkers. Say hello to some of the newest members of the Upstate Forever team! 
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Your tax-deductible gift to Upstate Forever will go directly toward protecting critical lands and saving special places in the Upstate.
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Upstate Forever is a nonprofit conservation organization that protects critical lands, waters, and the unique character of Upstate South Carolina.  Over the past two decades, we have worked to protect the natural assets that make the Upstate so special — our farmlands, forests, natural areas, rivers, and clean air. We are committed to ensuring that our communities are vibrant and retain their green spaces, outdoor heritage, and unique identities in the face of rapid development and significant sprawl. Our vision is an environmentally healthy, economically prosperous Upstate that offers a high quality of life now and for future generations.

For more information, visit our website at or send us an email .