Protecting Land & Water | Advocacy | Balanced Growth
1,000 acres newly under conservation easement with Upstate Forever — with more to come this year

The last several months of the year typically bring with them a whirlwind of activity for our Land Conservation team, and while much of this year has been atypical, this much has remained the same. We’ve recently protected more than 500 acres, assumed the conservation easement and perpetual stewardship of another 500 acres, and have received significant funding from the South Carolina Conservation Bank to protect even more land across the Upstate this year.

Iconic view of Table Rock further protected
Nestled at the base of Table Rock and hugging Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway 11, the recent addition of 21 protected acres joins a 36-acre property (Grant Meadow, pictured above) that was placed under a conservation easement in 2013. Read more

Safeguarding water quality in Union County
Located in eastern Union County, the 532-acre Gregorys Creek Mitigation site recently placed under conservation easement will safeguard water quality and better protect Gregorys Creek as it flows into the Broad River.

A “new to us” conservation easement
Recently, The Nature Conservancy of South Carolina transferred a 500-acre conservation easement to Upstate Forever. This protected property, called Cedar Rock, is located in the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains adjacent to the Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area. Read more

Funding secured for additional projects
In even more great news, we just received word from the South Carolina Conservation Bank that Upstate Forever has been awarded $505,000 to fund three conservation projects scheduled to be completed by the end of this year. Stay tuned for more!

Because of your support, Upstate Forever now protects more than 25,000 acres of farms, forests, and green spaces across Upstate South Carolina. 
Coming soon to a mailbox near you
Keep your eyes peeled for the latest issue of the Upstate Advocate, our twice yearly print newsletter. In this edition we showcase nine local artists inspired by our region's natural resources, a conversation with authors John Lane and Drew Lanham, and more. Not on our mailing list? Email to receive future newsletters.
Drive-thru Drug Take Back Day
Greer CPW, the City of Greer, and the Greer Police Department are hosting a drive-thru Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, Oct. 24. This is a great way to dispose of over-the-counter, prescription, and pet medications and ensure they don't wind up in our region's water supply! Bring old and unused pills to 301 McCall St in Greer from 10 am-2 pm. More details
Support Greenville's future this Tuesday

Did you know that of the more than 300,000 new residents forecasted to make the Upstate their home by 2040, more than half will land in Greenville County? The time to plan for growth and green space is now — before it is too late.

That’s why it is great news that Greenville County Council has added first reading of the “Greenville County Historic and Natural Resources Trust” to the agenda for the next virtual Council meeting this coming Tuesday at 5:00. The agenda can be found here. Please join us in virtually attending the meeting and reaching out to councilmembers to show your support.

If we do not take action to support our elected officials in protecting green space and water quality, we could quickly lose the natural places of the Upstate that are essential to our health and quality of life.
Protect Greenville's rural lands
Greenville County Council's Planning & Development Committee recently took up a proposed ordinance to amend the county's Land Development Regulations to better protect the county's most rural areas. If you have not yet, please sign this petition from our partners at the South Carolina Environmental Law Project and urge Council to support the ordinance— about 130 signatures are still needed!
A step toward statewide resilience
This week Governor Henry McMaster signed into law the Disaster Relief and Resilience Act, creating a State Office of Resilience and a Disaster Relief and Resilience Fund. Our thanks to Governor McMaster and all of the state legislators who championed this bill that will have a tremendous positive impact across South Carolina in the years to come! Read more from The Post & Courier
More news & updates

Help plan Spartanburg's future
Plan Spartanburg, the city's comp plan process, is hosting a virtual planning extravaganza Oct. 22–26. The first two days of Planapalooza feature deep dives into key topics identified in phase one of the process. Conservation, Growth and Development and All Things Green are focus group meetings at the top of our list and we hope to "see" you there! Register today

Natural gas pipelines in the news
Our Energy & State Policy Director Shelley Robbins has recently leant her knowledge to those seeking information about two proposed natural gas pipelines in South Carolina. In Travelers Rest, a proposed pipeline from Piedmont Natural Gas has some homeowners concerned and is being opposed by Upstate Forever — read the article or watch the television segment from WYFF here. Outside of the Upstate, a proposed pipeline from Dominion Energy has also raised questions as well as environmental justice concerns— read the article from the Associated Press here.

To learn more about the regulations, construction, land use implications, and engagement options surrounding proposed natural gas pipelines, watch our four-part Pipelines 101 webinar series here.

Protecting Spartanburg's farms and food systems
Prime agricultural lands continue to remain under threat from development pressures, particularly in Spartanburg County. The Spartanburg Food System Coalition (SFSC) is on a mission to strengthen all aspects of the local food system, increase access to healthy food, and comprehensively address food-related issues in Spartanburg. As a member of the SFSC, Upstate Forever hopes to combat the negative impacts of farmland loss by working with farmers across the Upstate who may be interested permanently protecting their farmland through a voluntary conservation easement. If you would like to learn more, contact Land Conservation Specialist Caitlyn Gendusa at

City of Greenville tree ordinance updates
Over the past several weeks, we've been sharing on social media about the City of Greenville's efforts to update its tree ordinance, a process that has been in the works since 2018. Currently, City of Greenville staff are reviewing public feedback collected through this month's online survey and making edits to the draft ordinance based on your feedback. They plan to have an updated draft to put before the Planning Commission at the November meeting. Stay tuned for more information. If you missed it, we recently published an insightful interview with Joelle Teachey, Executive Director of TreesUpstate, on the Upstate Forever blog.

Have you considered making a planned gift?
By including Upstate Forever in your will, trust, or estate plans, you can help protect our region's high quality of life for future generations. If you would like to learn more about planned giving or to receive a complimentary copy of our estate planning guide, email Aldon Knight, Director of Development and Community Relations, at
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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.