Upstate Forever, a conservation organization based in Greenville and Spartanburg, protected 2,176 acres of private and public farmlands, forests and green space across the 10-county Upstate region in 2020.
The nonprofit worked on partner projects to protect an additional 713 acres.
“We are immensely proud of the land protection successes our team accomplished in 2020 despite significant challenges the ongoing pandemic created,” said Scott Park, Glenn Hilliard director of land conservation for Upstate Forever. “This momentum has carried into the new year with several additional projects completed in early 2021 and several thousand additional acres forecasted to be protected across the Upstate this year.”
Upstate Forever’s 2020 completed conservation projects included:
- Kings Mountain Preserve in Cherokee County – 36 acres that will be home to a green burial cemetery
- Cedar Rock in Greenville County – a 497-acre property protected under a conservation easement, which was transferred from the Nature Conservancy of South Carolina to Upstate Forever. Part of the property is owned by Naturaland Trust
- Paw Paw Farm in Laurens County – a 241-acre farm that includes the protection of a rural scenic view along Milam Road and natural habitat of fish and wildlife
- Morris Property in Oconee County – a 25-acre property with environmental features including a mature hardwood forest, dense wetlands and native plant habitat
- Grant Meadow in Pickens County – a view of Table Rock from Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway 11 is permanently protected, and 21 acres on the property known as Grant Meadow were recently added to the 36-acre property
- Red Fox Farm in Spartanburg County – 120 acres of forestland
- Friendfield Farm in Union County – 383 acres of farmland, timber and hunting land
- Gregorys Creek mitigation site in Union County – consists of 532 acres
- Sandy Run Forest in Union County – comprised of 237 acres of forests, farmland and open fields
Upstate Forever also protected 81 acres in Pickens County, which are part of a nearly 800-acre property purchased by Naturaland Trust with the support of the South Carolina Conservation Bank and the USDA Community Forest Program.
Since its inception in 1998, the nonprofit has permanently protected approximately 25,800 acres through voluntary conservation easements in partnership with landowners and other conservation organizations.