With more than 80,000 acres of protected lands stretching from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the sand dunes of the Atlantic Ocean, South Carolina State Parks is a recipient of some of the Duke Energy charity donation.  - Photo: South Carolina Parks

With more than 80,000 acres of protected lands stretching from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the sand dunes of the Atlantic Ocean, South Carolina State Parks is a recipient of some of the Duke Energy charity donation. 

Photo: South Carolina Parks

The Duke Energy Foundation recently awarded more than $350,000 in grants to South Carolina organizations that will fund environmental projects, wildlife conservation efforts, and environmental educational programs across the state.

As a result of increased usage during the pandemic, a large portion of the funding also went to 22 qualified nonprofit and government entities that received up to $10,000 for funding of projects such as trail upkeep and maintenance; park beautification; and safety enhancements.

"These grants support programs and organizations that work to protect and restore the wildlife and natural resources that our communities depend on," said Michael Callahan, Duke Energy's South Carolina president. "We think it's important to work alongside our community partners to ensure these beautiful places around us can be enjoyed by nature lovers of all ages for years to come."

The South Carolina State Park Service manages and protects more than 80,000 acres of South Carolina's natural and cultural resources, including more than 300 miles of hiking and riding trails.

"Our partnership with Duke Energy is exceptional and has helped us deliver our promise of wise stewardship of resources and service to our visitors," said Paul McCormack, director of the South Carolina State Park Service. "The latest grants for Landsford Canal State Park and the Carrick Creek Trail at Table Rock State Park underscore the value of their significant support."

The City of Florence will use grant funding for an extension of a boardwalk at the Florence Rail Trail and the installation of a partially covered platform within the Jeffries Creek ecosystem.

"During this health crisis, having safe recreational opportunities for the citizens of Florence is more important than it has ever been," said Stephen Wukela, mayor of the City of Florence. "We are very thankful that Duke Energy has provided the city with this grant to expand those amenities and continue our efforts in expanding our trail systems."

A complete list of all grantees can be found here.

The Foundation funds more than $2 million annually to nonprofit organizations in South Carolina.

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