Protecting Rivers

Clean Water

As population pressure increases in the Upstate, an unprecedented number of individual and industry users are now competing for valuable water resources, Upstate Forever is working to protect water quality and quantity, ensuring that our streams, rivers, and lakes remain healthy for the benefit of all Upstate residents.

Our Clean Water team partners with a diverse group of stakeholders to preserve watershed lands critical to clean drinking water, and to monitor and take action on projects that threaten water quality. We also support river recreation through our blueway mapping projects and the Paddle SC website

Access to clean, reliable water is a fundamental right for all people across the Upstate, though some communities bear the brunt of inadequate water protections. In some cases, the local and statewide policies that affect watershed health need to be updated to reflect the needs of a changing climate and land use ethic. Standing with local communities and statewide partners, we advocate for the development and implementation of effective water resource plans and policies to ensure water resources can be enjoyed by all. 


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The value of water

We are partnering with local utilities and stakeholders throughout the Upstate to educate citizens on the true cost of providing clean drinking water and to generate public support for source water protection that benefits all Upstate residents.


We partner with water utilities and landowners to improve the health of our rivers by reducing sources of bacteria and nutrients.

Tyger River confluence Park and Blueway

A coalition of public, private, and nonprofit partners including Upstate Forever are working together in Spartanburg County to create a recreation and eco-tourism corridor in one of the nation’s fastest-growing regions. 

Blueway Mapping

View our maps of regional rivers, which offer paddlers of all skill levels an easy way to plan a waterway adventure. 

The Water Log

Our Clean Water team sends out a periodic newsletter dedicated to clean water issues and advocacy.


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Adopt a Stream

Join the team of volunteers who help keep our streams healthy by monitoring water quality. 

Saving Lake Greenwood

Our ongoing campaign to remove and reverse the effects of upstream development on Lake Greenwood.

Stormwater Management Solutions

From working to reduce impervious surfaces to promoting low-impact development, we look for ways to mitigate the effects of stormwater runoff.

Twelve Mile River Restoration

Upstate Forever successfully worked to clean up PCBs and enhance and recreation access in the Twelve Mile River.

Photo: Tom Blagden


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