Our Natural Environment Goal

Our citizens will manage our natural resources in a way that will support current and future generations.

Where We Are Now

  • Natural Environment icon

    Spartanburg County Volatile Organic Chemical emissions decreased in 2011 by 2,414 tons per year.

  • Natural Environment icon

    Daily Vehicle Miles Traveled have steadily increased in Spartanburg County since 2011 due to factors including changes in population, commuting patterns and economy.

  • Natural Environment icon

    Spartanburg County has experienced annual population growth over the last 5 years, though the smallest percentage increase each year of our peer counties.

Where We're Headed



  • down arrowReduce non-point source pollution to source waters through community awareness and involvement
  • Plus SignFacilitate community participation in County Planning Process
  • Continue to maintain Air Quality at or below EPA Air Quality Standards each year
  • - Utilized 319 grants to reduce contaminates on the Pacolet and Enoree Rivers in Spartanburg
  • - Installed 5 water monitoring stations that release real time water quality data
  • - Implemented County Strategic Plan
  • - Installed 20 Electric Car Charging Stations
  • - Completed 2 Landfill Gas-to-Energy projects

Making A Difference In Our Natural Environment

EPA Municipal Solid Waste Infographic

The amount of Municipal Solid Waste generated for American landfills seems overwhelming, but if we each make small changes every day, we can make a huge difference.  Check out this infographic from the Environmental Protection Agency for tips on what you can do to make a difference!


Natural Environment Community Leaders


The Spartanburg Community Indicators Project partners with Indicator Area Leaders to improve outcomes in each of its seven Indicator Areas.  These organizations set improvement goals based on indicator data and lead individuals, businesses and community groups to coordinate efforts and information, thus facilitating steady progress in quality of life improvement.


The Natural Environment Coalition serves as the Indicator Area Leader for the Natural Environment Indicator Area. The Coalition is a group of professional and nonprofit groups working together to improve natural environment outcomes in Spartanburg County. The groups coordinate their efforts through a council and have developed goals in five natural environment priority areas.  Each priority area's work is guided by a Priority Group.

Leading Indicators

Secondary Indicators

Crosscutting Indicators

Key variables that are most reflective of the state of the Natural Environment and are useful predictors of Natural Environment trends.

Air Quality

Spartanburg County's air quality will meet or exceed all standards.  Clean air will promote healthy citizens and economic development.

Indicators: Ground Level Ozone, Particulate Matter, Emissions by Source, NOx & VOC Emissions

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Spartanburg County will increasingly recognize the importance of protecting biodiverse places, building an understanding of ecosystem services and slowing the rate of development in areas of significant species richness while mindfully improving biodiversity.

Indicators: Rare, Threatened & Endangered Species & Communitites, Land Cover, Biodiversity Map

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Green Space & Protected Land

Spartanburg County will identify and protect lands of special natural, scenic, cultural, historic and agricultural importance and preserve park lands for public active and passive recreational use.

Indicators: Forested Acres, Protected Land

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Land Use Planning

Spartanburg County and its municipalities will reduce the fiscal and environmental impacts of population growth and achieve enhanced livability and economic prosperity..

Indicators: Existing Land Use, Development Objectives & Strategies, Land Use Analysis, Sprawling MSAs, Compact MSAs, Development Over Time, Landcover Change, Future Land Use

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Water Quality & Supply

All Spartanburg County source waters will have improved water quality through the reduction of contaminants.

Indicators: Watersheds, Impaired Water Bodies, Drinking Water, Storm Water Runoff

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Variables that have direct impact on or are tangentially reflective of the state of the Natural Environment.


A valuable measure of quality of life in a community is the percentage of residents within walking distance of a park or recreation area.

Indicators: Parks per resident, Paricipant Hours at Parks, Parks in Spartanburg County

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Communities that prioritize a clean and sustainable environment support low-carbon and high resource-efficient transportation options by developing supportive infrastructure.

Indicators: Comprehensive Plan Analysis

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Vehicle Miles Traveled

Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) data are used identify traffic patterns and road usage and are essential to planning transportation infrastructure and maintenance.  VMT is also a good indicator of pullution due to vehicle emissions.

Indicators: Daily VMT, VMT per Year

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About 20% of land in Spartanburg County is agricultural and farming is an important economic sector of the county.

Indicators: Annual Farm Statisitics

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Soil Quality & Preservation

Soil quality is especially important in an agricultural setting.  As communities favor sustainability and locall grown food, preserving soil quality is increasingly important.  Soil quality also impacts building practices.

Indicators: Soil Quality Overview

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Population Growth & Density

Population growth and density impact most environmental issues including air and water quality, energy consumption and land use.

Indicators: Resident Population, Annual Population Growth, Population Density, Population Projections

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Indicators in more than one Indicator Area that have tangential or predictive impact on the Natural Environment.

Public Health

The built environment impacts health.  There are a number of conditions caused or exacerbated by airborne particulates, contaminated water, structures and soil and communities of low walkability.  Learn more in The Status of Public Health, Spartanburg County, 2013 Update.

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Economic Development

Compact, diverse and walkable development as well as intelligent growth plans can increase property values and taxes, encourage job creation, reduce housing and transportation costs and community amenities that improve quality of life.

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What Can I Do?


Stay Informed

Connect with us by email or mail and follow us Facebook and Twitter.  Our handle is Spartanburg CIP.


Volunteer With Our Partners

Find and post volunteer opportunities on United Way of the Piedmont's Get Connected site.

Attend an Event

Check out our calendar of community events and don't forget to share!