Building Up Our Defense

For 35 years, the South Carolina Environmental Law Project has stood between environmental harm and the lands, waters and communities that cannot defend themselves.

With you as our partner, we'll be able to keep fighting - and keep winning - today, tomorrow and beyond for future generations of South Carolinians.

We are facing the reality that our state's existing system of environmental regulation is failing to protect us from the accelerating deterioration of life-sustaining conditions.

Unplanned and speculative development is driving the steady conversion of rural and agricultural lands into sprawling subdivisions. The number of impaired waterbodies in our state, as determined by DHEC, has taken a turn for the worse. Environmental justice remains elusive. In short, the number of battles worth fighting across South Carolina has begun to exceed our capacity to fight them.

Now is the time to act through our Building Up Our Defense Campaign: a major strategic investment in our organization's capacity to take on critical cases and issues across the state, enabling us to:

By supporting our campaign, you can have a profound impact on our ability to achieve our vision - where our land, water and communities are protected and South Carolina laws and policies prioritize natural systems that sustain life.

Invest In Our Vision
amy armstrong | executive director

The gap between our vision and reality is what fuels our work each day.

We know we are often the last thing standing between environmental harm and the public good.

Campaign Priorities


Stopping the Degradation of Essential Natural Systems

South Carolina residents and visitors alike appreciate and value our beaches, mountains, and the unfettered flow of our rivers. They marvel at the hundreds of thousands of acres of wild spaces, including barrier islands, ridges, rolling hills, estuaries, cypress swamps, and upland forests. Yet it takes constant vigilance to protect these life-sustaining natural systems, especially at a time when population growth and the climate crisis are exacerbating the impact of harmful projects and polluting activities. Stopping the degradation of life-supporting natural systems is at the core of our mission. Achieving success means continuing to act as the last line of defense against harmful land uses, being innovative with new legal tools that can secure lasting protections, and rebalancing our legal system to be more in tune with long-term human prosperity.

Your gift to the Building Up Our Defense campaign will help us persevere and win crucial legal battles across the state, including ongoing projects like:


Protecting Water from Current and Future Threats

Water quality and quantity are two sides of the same coin. At SCELP, our goal is to prevent the degradation of South Carolina's water resources by halting pollution (water quality) and stewarding their availability (water quantity). While our efforts to protect water from current threats are often reactive because we are fighting existing harmful activities, our efforts to protect water from future threats are more proactive because they seek to advance new legal protections and regulatory standards.

Your gift to the Building Up Our Defense Campaign will support our present-day efforts to:


Advancing Environmental Justice

Ever since our founding, we have strived to create, refine, and enforce environmental protections by offering our legal expertise to those in need, giving them an effective voice and legal muscle in processes when they would otherwise be financially foreclosed or procedurally marginalized. Through the Building Up Our Defense Campaign, we will carry forward our motto “no case is too small” whenever a vulnerable or frontline community seeks assistance in our areas of expertise.

Your gift to the Building Up Our Defense Campaign will help us win important legal battles for underrepresented communities, including current battles tied to:

Build Up Our Defense, Now!

Whether it is litigation on federal and state cases or giving voice and legal muscle to vulnerable communities, SCELP’s advocacy is increasingly the last thing standing between environmental harm and the public good. Will you help us build up our defense? Thank you!

contact us

Do you have questions or need additional information?
Contact Filippo Ravalico, our Director of Operations.

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