Office of Resilience Receives Grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina Office of Resilience (SCOR) will receive $750,675 from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s National Coastal Resilience Fund to develop resilience and flood risk reduction plans for the Salkehatchie River Basin as a pilot program for future watershed-based planning efforts.
SCOR will work with the S.C. Sea Grant Consortium and S.C. Beach Advocates to develop the S.C. Resilient Coastal Communities Collaborative Program, a resilience planning initiative that will span Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton and Jasper counties as well as 34 municipalities in the Salkehatchie River Basin. This watershed-based planning approach will help coordinate flood risk reduction solutions for waterways that flow across county and municipal boundaries with the intent of minimizing negative impacts on downstream communities.
SCOR defines resilience as the ability of communities, economies and ecosystems within South Carolina to anticipate, absorb, recover and thrive when presented with environmental change and natural hazards.
“We’re honored to receive funding for this project which will put common sense resilience planning principles into action,” said Chief Resilience Officer Ben Duncan. “Increased coordination and planning on a watershed scale will have a positive impact on the citizens in these counties and provide a framework for future projects.”
The project, which will total $896,225 with matching funds, will produce 10 Community Risk and Vulnerability Reports with identified solutions. The reports will be integrated into a Salkehatchie River Basin Watershed Resilience Plan which prioritizes actions that increase community and ecosystem resilience. The project also will produce a Watershed Resilience Planning Handbook that will provide guidance to other communities for implementing a similar process of watershed-based resilience planning.
Using community engagement expertise and understanding of coastal issues from staff at the S.C. Sea Grant Consortium and S.C. Beach Advocates, the resulting project will directly engage socially vulnerable and historically underserved communities to identify climate resilience issues and develop specific and actionable solutions.
“The S.C. Sea Grant Consortium looks forward to offering research and community engagement capabilities to improve the resilience of coastal communities,” said Dr. Susan Lovelace, executive director of the SC Sea Grant Consortium.
“South Carolina’s coastal communities have identified sea level rise and flooding as their top management challenges and I am thrilled to be working with the state on this grant to address these critical needs,” said Dr. Nicole Elko, executive director of S.C. Beach Advocates.
The S.C. Resilient Coastal Communities Collaborative Program will kick off in 2023.
Check out external coverage of this development: