A Lifestyle Guide From the Locals – Bluffton, South Carolina

Bluffton Fights for the May River: A Watershed Protection Plan

The May River, a vital waterway in Bluffton, South Carolina, has faced challenges due to rapid development. To combat declining water quality and protect the river’s ecosystem, the Town of Bluffton, along with Beaufort County and residents, created the May River Watershed Action Plan.

Protecting a Precious Resource

The May River Watershed Action Plan tackles two main goals:

  • Restoring shellfish harvesting: Fecal coliform levels in the river have risen due to development, leading to shellfish bed closures. The plan aims to reverse this trend and reopen the area for harvesting.
  • Preventing future degradation: By implementing preventative measures, the plan aspires to safeguard the May River’s health for future generations.

Taking Action

The plan outlines several strategies to achieve these goals. Here are some key points:

  • Land conservation: The plan encourages purchasing land or conservation easements to protect natural areas that filter pollutants before they reach the river.
  • Stormwater management: Upgrading stormwater management practices is crucial. This may involve retrofitting existing developments to reduce runoff and implementing new techniques that utilize infiltration and filtration.
  • Septic system maintenance: The plan offers programs to assist residents with septic system maintenance and conversion to public sewer systems, which can significantly reduce bacterial contamination.
  • Public involvement: Community engagement is a cornerstone of the plan. Educating residents about responsible practices and fostering partnerships are essential for long-term success.

The Road Ahead

The May River Watershed Action Plan is a continuous effort. The Town of Bluffton provides updates on progress and ongoing initiatives The plan’s success hinges on collaboration between the Town, Beaufort County, and the community. By working together, Bluffton can ensure the May River remains a healthy and vibrant part of the local ecosystem for years to come.