On April 22, East Cooper Land Trust celebrated Earth Day by hosting their Fifth annual Mayors Council on Land Conservation in East Cooper. Representatives from local municipalities, county council, and Rep. Joe Cunningham's office enjoyed a boat ride as they discussed conservation efforts. The outing showcased Conch Creek Islands, almost 400-acres of marsh and high lands purchased by East Cooper Land Trust in 2017 and was sponsored by Mayor Jimmy Carroll (Isle of Palms) and Barrier Island Eco-Tours.
“We want to be a resource for the mayors and other elected officials as they make important decisions that could affect our environment. In addition, as a non-profit land trust, we hold conservation easements on land that make conservation decisions permanent; whereas municipal decisions can be adjusted under future administrations," said Catherine Main, executive director of East Cooper Land Trust.
East Cooper Land Trust has been working on important initiatives, with support from the municipalities, such as the East Cooper Trail which will connect the Cooper to the Santee River through safe walking and biking trails. The Land Trust cannot do their work without the support of the municipalities, but in turn the organization provides important tools to support the municipalities in park and trail planning as well as cultural preservation. This annual gathering is a venue for the mayors to participate in meaningful conversation and healthy competition regarding how they can continue to support conservation for the benefit of their residents.
East Cooper Land Trust permanently conserves land for the benefit of the people and the environment. From beautiful marshes, to land for local food sources, to small neighborhood parks, 22 properties and more than 800 acres have been protected.