STOP THE PALMETTO PIPELINE
Georgia will carry the majority of environmental exposure with 210 miles of the Palmetto Pipeline’s 360-mile journey from North Augusta, SC to Jacksonville, FL.
Kinder Morgan plans to run the pipeline through all of Georgia’s River Basins that drain into the Atlantic Ocean and the Okefenokee Watershed. These areas are:
In the continental U.S., there are only 42 free-flowing rivers greater than 124 miles in length. Georgia contains five of these rivers, three of which are in the path of the proposed pipeline, Altamaha, Ogeechee, and Satilla Rivers. The Okefenokee Swamp is also the headwaters of the St. Marys and the Suwanee River, which flows to the Gulf of Mexico.
A PALMETTO PIPELINE RUPTURE PUTS AT RISK:
All of Georgia’s River Basins that Drain into the Atlantic Ocean
The Okefenokee is the headwaters of the St. Mary’s River that drains into Atlantic Ocean and the Suwanee River that drains into the Gulf of Mexico. The Okefenokee is the largest freshwater swamp (watershed) in the world.
Georgia’s Lower Coastal Plain has the state’s Highest Percentage of Wetlands:
GA Coastal Wetlands include:
“Georgia has the largest marshlands on the U.S. East Coast with 378,000 acres of estuarine tidal marsh. he estuarine marshlands of coastal Georgia are among the richest providers of nutrients in the world. Such marshlands provide a nursery for commercially and recreationally important species of shellfish and other wildlife, provide a great buffer against flooding and erosion, and help control and disseminate pollutants. The coastal marshlands provide a natural recreation resource, which has become vitally linked to the economy of Georgia’s coastal zone and to that of the entire state. This…system is costly, if not impossible, to reconstruct or rehabilitate once adversely affected…”
GA Coastal Marshlands Protection Act (O.C.G.A. 12-5-280 et seq. of 1970)
Flatwoods salamander, striped newt, swallow-tailed kite nesting rookeries, red-cockaded woodpecker, Woodstock rookeries among others.
American bald eagle nesting
Ebenezer Creek is one of Georgia’s four designated Wild and Scenic Rivers and is a National Natural Landmark. Its swamp consists of unusual virgin bald cypress some estimated to be more than 1,000 years Old.
Savannah National Wildlife Refuge
“The Savannah River is the lifeblood of the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge, which provides rich habitats that support a diverse array of migratory and resident wildlife.” The refuge supports one of the most diverse reptile and amphibian populations in the world.
Sports Fishing Specie include:
American shad, black crappie, bluegill, chain pickerel, channel catfish, largemouth bass, redbreast sunfish, redear sunfish, striped bass, and white bass.
Seabrook, Charles. “Savannah River.” New Georgia Encyclopedia. 17 September 2014.
Ogeechee River Estuary
The Ogeechee is a blackwater river and one of Georgia’s five free flowing
rivers. Its drainage to the coast plays a significant role in forming Wassaw, Ossabaw, St. Catherines, Blackbeard, and Sapelo islands.
Atlantic Pigtoe Mussel, Shortnose Sturgeon, Swallow-Tailed Kite
Sports Fishing Specie include:
Redbreast Sunfish, Bullhead and White Catfish, Large Mouth Bass, Bluegill and Redear Sunfish
The Altamaha River is one of Georgia’s five free flowing rivers and is the third largest contributor of fresh water to the Atlantic Ocean from North America. The drainage of the Altamaha basin to the coast plays a significant role in the forming of Wolf, Little St. Simons, St. Simons, and Sea Island and Jekyll Island.
The river basin also supports the only known example of old growth Longleaf Pine and Black oak forest in the United States.
At least 120 species of rare or endangered plants and animals live in the Altamaha River watershed, including eleven species of pearly mussels, seven of which are endemic to the Altamaha. Other notable species include Shortnose sturgeon, Atlantic sturgeon, West Indian manatee, Eastern indigo snake Greenfly orchid, and Georgia plume.
New Georgia Encyclopedia
Is the largest blackwater, free flowing river situated entirely within Georgia. The drainage of the Satilla River basin to the coast plays a significant role in the forming of Little Cumberland and Cumberland Islands.
The threatened and endangered species found in the Satilla Basin include:
Swallow-tailed kite, the gopher tortoise, indigo snake, redbreast sunfish, southern leopard frog, wood stork and many others.
“The river produces exciting largemouth bass fishing, a world-class redbreast sunfish fishery, and, in its estuary, phenomenal speckled sea trout, red drum, tarpon, shark, and flounder fishing. The Satilla/St. Andrews Sound estuary is furthermore an important pillar of penaeid shrimp (brown and white) and blue crab production, harvested commercially and recreationally.”
St. Marys River
The St Marys River is a blackwater river forming the easternmost border between Georgia and Florida. 41% of the St Marys basin is wetlands. Ground water resources are supplied by the Floridan aquifer system.
From its cypress and bottomland hardwood swamps to its salt marshes and mud flats, the St. Marys Basin provides habitat for a diversity and abundance of animals and plants. Many native plant species are found in the basin, including cypress, yellow pine, gum, magnolia, maple, holly, poplar, willow, river birch and a variety of oaks.
Wildlife in this area includes deer, otter, beaver, raccoon, alligator, gopher tortoise, turkey and ribbon snakes. The middle portion of the river supports bear, panther, bobcat and the red-cockaded woodpecker.
The river has an extensive marsh system and is critical habitat for 23 plant specie, and 54 kinds of animals. More than 65 species of fish have been identified.
Redfish, spotted sea trout, flounder, largemouth bass, sunfish, bluegill, bullhead and white catfish.
Floridan Aquifer System
The Floridan Aquifer System is one of the most productive aquifer systems in the United States.