Land Use:Without a unified vision, our quality of life is at risk.
What’s at Stake
Our magnificent landscapes are a defining feature of our coast. Georgia’s vast marshes, barrier island beaches, maritime forests, and other coastal habitats provide more than a scenic backdrop: they also translate into clean water and air, important wildlife habitat, and ample opportunities for recreation, hunting, and fishing.
50% of our coastal counties remain covered by forest and eight of our barrier islands are under some form of permanent protection; as a result, Georgia has been largely shielded from much of the development pressure seen in other states. But as land grows scarce in neighboring states, it is widely recognized that our local governments have not adequately planned for growth.
What We’re Doing
Our team is working with local and state elected officials and community leaders to ensure growth plans enhance our communities and support habitat conservation. We advocate for smart growth policies, responsible zoning and infrastructure planning, and local and state funding for conservation land acquisition.
Georgia Coast Collaborative – In 2015, twelve conservation organizations came together to form the Georgia Coast Collaborative (GCC) because we believe that by taking a holistic view rather than a piecemeal community-by-community and issue-by-use approach, we enhance our changes of protecting the unique, beautiful resource that is the Georgia’s coast. The member groups seek to use the GCC to communicate more effectively to friends and residents about a positive vision for our Georgia coast and the impact our work has on achieving this vision.
Rezoning Cumberland Island – Camden County is considering a new zoning category for Cumberland Island. This is an endeavor that One Hundred Miles supports, as we believe that finding the right zoning is one means to an end that is consistent with the continued conservation of the Cumberland Island National Seashore. Just as we value the conservation of the public property on the island, we also believe that the private property rights of the island’s landowners are important and should be recognized and respected.
Now is the time for all who love Cumberland Island to advocate for the adoption of a low-density, residential zoning solution for the island’s remaining private property. Learn more about our work to implement a responsible zoning solution on Cumberland Island.
Jekyll Island Permits – The Jekyll Island Authority (JIA) has applied for a Shore Protection Act (SPA) permit from the Coastal Resources Division to conduct activities along the entirety of the beach and dune system. The SPA is one of the strongest tools we have to protect Georgia’s natural resources. Click here to read the application package. Update 4/28/17: Their permit has been denied!
While we understand the JIA’s interest in simplifying the process of conducting projects with the potential to enhance our beaches and natural resources, we are concerned that the permit application covers an area too broad to be adequately regulated, and that the permit application lacks details necessary to uphold the intent of the SPA.
Spaceport Camden – Last year, Camden County signed a land-use agreement giving them the option of purchasing a 4,000-acre parcel located at the end of Harriett’s Bluff Road. The county argues that this use of public funding will kickstart the development of Spaceport Camden, a private, vertical rocket launch site and supporting industrial complex.
Although the idea of a Spaceport is exciting, taxpayers in Camden County must remain informed about the project’s potential negative impacts on our environment, fiscal resources, and coastal communities. One Hundred Miles is concerned about how this project will affect our quality of life on the Georgia coast. Learn more about the effects of the proposed Spaceport and how you can take action.