In 2020, Backwater Farms LLC was approved to mine sand on less than 5 acres off Depot Road in Conway. The Coastal Conservation League opposed the mine, given its proximity to conserved lands and the Waccamaw River, and warned of the likelihood that it would be expanded in the future, having an even greater footprint and impact. That time has come. Backwater Farms is now seeking a permit to mine an additional 15 acres up to 20 feet deep. The public deserves the opportunity to raise concerns and call for special conditions for this mine given its location.
Please add your name today to our comments to the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control calling for a public hearing! Comments are due by October 6. Individual comments can be submitted here.
The Depot Road mine is directly adjacent to the Waccamaw River Park owned by the City of Conway and across Highway 501 Business from the Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge. This location, so close to the river and within the floodplain, presents many concerns. Expanded mining and associated activities would further impact wildlife and water quality, specifically increased polluted stormwater runoff, increased turbidity, reduced ecosystem services, and reduced flood mitigation potential. Adverse health risks include dust inhalation for those visiting the park. Noise pollution and large truck traffic associated with mining can be disruptive to animals and to human neighbors. At the minimum, we would like to see buffers of at least 100 feet, rather than the 50 feet proposed. Conway residents, neighbors, and visitors to the park and refuge deserve the chance to speak and raise concerns to DHEC.
Please add your name to speak up for the Waccamaw River, the wildlife, our parks, and our community!