March 2024 Keeper’s Report

The Post and Courier, Sunday March 3, 2024

Welcome to your March 2024 Keeper’s Report!

If you’ve seen the Post and Courier lately, you know it’s been a very busy start to 2024 for your Charleston Waterkeeper! A pillar of our advocacy work is the data we collect and analyze to drive action for clean water. That’s where our team thrives–turning data in action and advocacy on the issues that impact your waterways.

What you might not know is that a team of dedicated volunteers, community scientists, trained field investigators, certified Creek Watchers, and graduate students help us collect all our data. Collectively, they are our boots-on-the-water and empower our knowledge of your waterways and our advocacy work for clean water.

You can see all that and more in our 2024 Press Round Up covering microplastic testing, illegal sewer overflows, our efforts to hold DHEC accountable for septic tank pollution, and action to support strong state wetland protections. The common thread that unites all this is an unwavering belief that together we can create a Charleston where all of your waterways are healthy and protected!

That’s not all! Already this year, we’ve removed over 500 pounds of debris from recycled oyster shell, planted over 15,000 Spartina seedlings, deployed passive samplers with NOAA that test for pesticides and PAHs, trained 10 new Creek Watchers, finalized a scaleable microplastic monitoring protocol, revitalized regular nurdle patrols, responded to 12 pollution reports from local citizens who are passionate about making sure your waterways are clean and healthy.

The year has only just begun! Looking ahead, water quality testing picks up steam in April and our Swim Alert bacteria testing starts in May providing you and your family with the information you need to get out on the water this Spring!

Hope to see you on the water soon!

The News

Unlocking the Microplastics Mystery!

Microplastic pollution is pervasive in your rivers, creeks, and harbor. We’re working with the College of Charleston and a dedicated team of community scientists to better understand its impact. 

The Post and Courier:  Read more

176 Illegal Overflows

Since 2015 Charleston Water System’s sewers have overflowed 176 times fouling neighborhoods and polluting waterways. That’s why we warned CWS that we plan to file a lawsuit if the problem is not fixed.

The Post and Courier:  Read more

A Broken System

DHEC’s system for permitting septic tanks is broken–allowing developers to pack 100s of tanks into small areas without any consideration of the cumulative pollution impact on local waterways. 

Post and Courier:  Learn More

Isolated Wetlands at Risk

The SC Office of Resilience estimates 2.8 million acres of South Carolina wetlands lost protections after the Supreme Court’s Sackett decision. That’s why we need strong state protections now! 

Post and Courier: Read more

πŸ“£ 🌊 Events! 🎬 🎟

Public Access Takeover πŸ¦€ 🎣 πŸš£πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ

Engage with your local waterways! Kayak with guides at Charleston Kayak, learn about crabbing, fishing, and water quality from our friends at Casual Crabbing with Tia, and Youth 2 Ocean!

Sign up! 

The next generation! πŸ“š

Two of our amazing interns, Britney and Lauren, spoke to parents and kids at the “SIES Presentation Night” about who we are and how to protect your waterways! Their presentation was top notch! 🌊

Represent! 🌎

Your Waterkeeper and Board of Directors Chair Alys Campaigne were in Columbia supporting to efforts to protect the Edisto River, secure clean energy, and foster transparency.

Get involved  

πŸ“£ Rally for Clean Water! πŸ›Ά

Ready to rally for clean water with bands, beer, and a weekend on the water? 🌊 May 17 – May 19, 2024 is a celebrations for your waterways. 

Let’s Rally!  

Celebrations of Science and Art!πŸ”¬ πŸ–Ό 🌊

We had a great time at Cultivate last month learning about biases in local water quality studies from Jess Kusher!

Check out our events

Cast and Drafts 🎣 🍻

We always love having the opportunity to mingle, inspire, and talk clean water with fellow water lovers and anglers! 

Check out our events

Member Spotlight

Barbara Beckingham

What a pleasure it was to catch up with our microplastic monitoring hero! Barbara has has been an incredible partner and expert advisor in our efforts to develop an effective community-science microplastic monitoring program at Charleston Waterkeeper! 

Learn more

Rally Public Access Map

Hot off the press! Where will you access the water for Rally for Clean Water in May? Thank you to our very own, Molly Moloney for publishing this gem! Check it out and make your plan for Rally for Clean Water! 

πŸ“£ Clean Water Updates 🌊

Service Saturday success! πŸ’ͺ🏼

Shoutout to Dylan and Gunner, two students who completed a service project by giving back to their waterways! You too can be like them when you sign up to participate in the Rally for Clean Water! 

Sign up!

Hands up for oyster cleaning πŸ¦ͺ

We collected 203 lbs of debris last month from local oyster shells! Join our weekly volunteer activities with DNR SCORE cleaning recycled oyster shell. 

Volunteer Today

There is still time to join! 🌱

Our weekly volunteer activities will be wrapping up with DNR SCORE soon as we get into the busy spring season. There’s still time to plant Spartina seedlings. Get in on the fun while you still can!  

Volunteer Today


The Nurdle Issue 

Nurdles. They’re everywhere. Learn more about why your estuary is ground zero for one slice of the global plastic pollution problem from our friends at Audubon Magazine in A New Plastic Wave is Coming to Our Shores.


Let’s Get Social

Don’t miss any of the action for clean water: especially the weekly bacteria testing data! Be sure to follow along on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and now LinkedIn! 

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