The South Carolina Floodwater Commission is launching an ambitious effort to plant 3 million tree seeds – assisted by citizens, students, churches, non-profits, municipal governments, private sector partners and other civic-minded organizations and volunteers – on Earth Day, Thursday, April 22, 2021.
Dubbed “Power Plant SC,” the statewide project will be the largest single-day tree planting event in American history. The Commission has assembled a coalition of public, private and non-profit environmental partners to raise awareness about the importance of trees to human and environmental health, not the least of which is the mitigation of disastrous flooding. For each tree planted, 60 gallons of water run-off is avoided, 443 gallons of rainfall is intercepted, and 133 pounds of carbon dioxide is sequestered annually (estimates are based upon USDA Forest Service research).
Dillon County will be participating in the event. If you need seeds or more information, please contact Johnnie Luehrs at the Dillon County Chamber of Commerce at 843-774-8551 or Pat Laird at 843-845-2875 as soon as possible.
Many regions across the Palmetto State – not only our unprotected coastlines, but equally vulnerable areas hundreds of miles inland – have frequently experienced severe flooding stemming from record- heavy rainstorms, hurricanes, and tides, all of which threaten our states citizens, our property and our way of life. The Floodwater Commission is organizing this historic planting event as a platform to bring attention to this issue of flooding and its causes while also offering solutions for easing its impact.
Aware of the role that forested areas play in flood mitigation and carbon storage, not to mention air and water filtration, the Floodwater Commission is complementing the day’s activities with an educational component that it hopes will reach every primary and secondary student, statewide. In addition to organizing and facilitating multiple, simultaneous seed-planting events at community centers, schools, parks and other public venues, organizers have developed a series of age-appropriate learning objectives around plant biology and the environmental services provided by trees and forests. The resulting lesson plans are correlated to state science standards and shared with all school districts and teachers prior to Earth Day.
The Floodwater Commission is encouraging every individual and organization that wants to participate to sign up for as many seeds as they would like and join in on the synchronized planting, which will be led and highlighted by a ceremonial seed- and tree-planting at the Governor’s Mansion the morning of Earth Day. Up to 10,000 tree seedlings will also be planted at satellite events as part of the effort.
A stellar lineup of state agencies, non-profits, corporate sponsors, media personalities, volunteers and others have signed-on to the effort with the S.C. Department of Education, S.C. Department of Corrections, S.C. Forestry Commission, Palmetto Pride and private sector executives taking the lead on everything from planning and communications to procurement and logistics. Working together, these partners are creating an environmentally conscious, positive and memorable learning experience around which all school-age children – and all South Carolinians – can rally. More information will be printed about the Dillon event as made available.