Groundwater Capacity Use Areas - Western South Carolina

In 2004, The SC Water Plan, 2nd. Edition published by South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR), recommended the entire Coastal Plain province be designated a capacity use area.

DHEC continued to review previously published reports on local groundwater conditions by the DNR and USGS.

On July 19, 2016, Aiken County Council requested that portions of Aiken County be designated as a capacity use area.

In May of 2017, DHEC released a document assessing the groundwater conditions of a seven-county region (Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Lexington, and Orangeburg) currently referred to as the proposed Western Capacity Use Area. The assessment examined reported groundwater withdrawal data and the current groundwater conditions in the area. The review indicated that water level declines in these aquifer systems were being influenced by an increase in groundwater use that reduced recharge to the aquifer systems.

DHEC hosted stakeholder meetings in each county (Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Lexington, and Orangeburg) and a public hearing to gather input and additional information concerning the potential designation of a new capacity use area. The designation of a Capacity Use Area requires DHEC Board approval. Anyone or any group who is interested in participating in this process should contact us in order to be put on the mailing list for upcoming meeting dates and locations.


Additional Resources


A Preliminary Assessment of the Groundwater Conditions in Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, Lexington, and Orangeburg Counties, South Carolina


Environment General Public