Charlotte, N.C. – The Catawba Lands Conservancy has been awarded $1,142,000 in grant funding from the North Carolina Land and Water Fund (NCLWF) to be used for two conservation projects important for protecting water quality and native species around the Catawba River and its tributaries, including the South Fork River. The two projects, totaling 115 acres, are located in Gaston County and both provide an opportunity for future trail connections through the Carolina Thread Trail, creating public access for the surrounding communities.
The allocation of this funding reinforces the importance of the work happening in the North Carolina Piedmont to protect drinking water for 1.1 million people (10% of the North Carolina population) and unique places that are home to rare, threatened and endangered plants. The protected forests and wetlands will provide barriers to pollutants along our waterways and protect nature’s beauty from the heavy development pressure facing the region. The Piedmont is home to some of the fastest-growing urban centers in the Southeast United States, making it necessary to set land aside through conservation in a fast closing window of opportunity.
The NCLWF rankings and approval of funding for the Conservancy’s two projects underscore this need. Of 88 projects considered for funding in this cycle, the Conservancy’s were ranked number 1 and number 25. The NCLWF application process is highly competitive and requires applicants to provide land trust funding and secure other public or private dollars to match funds awarded through the grant process.
The Conservancy is proud to have partners, including J.M. Huber Corporation, that understand the critical importance of conservation and are enthusiastic to provide matching funds.
”J.M. Huber Corporation is proud to have contributed to grant funding for this project through our annual Impact Your Community Program, which is part of our Company’s approach to community engagement, known as Huber Helps,” says Lea Volpe, Director of Corporate Communications and Community Relations. “We believe that working with groups such as the Catawba Lands Conservancy not only protects vital green spaces in growing communities, but contributes to healthier communities.”
Additional matching funding is put up by the Conservancy itself, the primary source being donations from individuals. If you would like to support the Conservancy’s conservation work, visit catawbalands.org/donate to make a gift.