The Gills Creek Watershed is among the largest impaired urban watersheds in South Carolina, and contains over 70 miles of streams and lakes, and 47,000 acres of land. The watershed is included in the cities of Columbia, Cayce, Forest Acres, and Arcadia Lakes; Richland County, and the US Army's Fort Jackson.
The watershed's headwaters start above Sesquicentennial State Park and flow into the Congaree River just above the Congaree Swamp National Park.
The Gills Creek Watershed Association is dedicated to restoring the watershed through education, grass roots action, public and private partnerships, remediation projects, and controlled development.
The goal is to return the Gills Creek Watershed to a living resource providing recreational opportunities, habitat for native wildlife and plants, and a national model for watershed planning and management.
You can participate by joining the Association, becoming active in the Association's initiatives, spreading the word to your friends, neighbors and co-workers, and promoting the Association and its vision to your elected officials.
Monitor Gills Creek stream flow gauge - https://waterdata.usgs.gov/sc/nwis/uv?site_no=02169570&format=gif&period=31
NOAA National Weather Service Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service - https://water.weather.gov/ahps2/hydrograph.php?wfo=cae&gage=gils1
The Need to Monitor Gills Creek Water Quality –Detecting and Documenting Change
SC DHEC’s recently released draft 303(d) report continues to list Gills Creek as an impaired water body for E.Coli (for recreation) and Dissolved Oxygen (for aquatic life). The report has now documented lead as a new impairment for aquatic life at one sampling location, station number C017, located near Bluff Road in the lower portion of the watershed. It is important to note that the level of lead, according to DHEC, is not a public health concern, but could impair aquatic life The source(s) of the lead contamination is not yet known, but the GCWA is working with DHEC, our non-profit partners, as well as our City and County partners, as efforts are made to understand the cause of the contamination. For some time, GCWA has been conducting water quality sampling and monitoring within the watershed that includes a range of water quality indicators. We now plan to expand our coverage, and need your help. And thank you for your help!
We will keep you informed as we learn more about the lead impairment.