Integrating Climate in Coastal Land Protection and Restoration: Winyah Bay and Pee Dee River Basin (Winyah-Sewee) Conservation and Resiliency Planning
The third-largest estuarine drainage area in the United States lies along the northern coast of South Carolina. The habitats found here range from floodplain forest and freshwater wetlands — South Carolina’s largest — to beaches that support greater numbers of nesting loggerhead sea turtles than anywhere else but Florida. These wetlands and woodlands attract migratory birds, waterfowl and the federally endangered red cockaded woodpecker, as well as black bear, osprey and 59 species of reptiles and amphibians.
All this diversity is at risk due to sea level rise, saltwater intrusion and worsening erosion from strengthening storms. Models suggest that some beaches could be reduced by nearly half, and changes are already being observed in some coastal waterways. The Nature Conservancy of South Carolina (TNC SC) is working to save this habitat and its wildlife by implementing a policy of climate modeling, planning and adaptation.
- TNC SC’s project FAQ for Winyah Bay and the Pee Dee River Basin
- TNC SC’s project FAQ for the Sewee to Santee Project Area