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With your support, we will continue promoting new policies to help redefine "progress" in coastal Georgia. Reconsidering the goals and standards that determine how our vital natural resources will be used, conserved, and protected is a continuous process. This reassessment is more urgent under several current trends, which are combining to produce long-term impacts. Consider the following:

Population of Georgia's coastal region will double to more than one million within 30 years. On average, that will be at least 16,500 more people every year demanding housing, water, roads and land in this environmentally fragile and naturally beautiful place we call home. Rapidly developing upriver areas of Georgia are also imposing ever-greater threats on downstream areas.

Good environmental science is not always used to support more reliable protection of our precious natural resources. To address this problem, the Center is working to (1) promote funding and use of new research needed to improve decisions affecting our environment, (2) introduce scientific expertise into the review of environmental permits, (3) prevent premature permitting by thoroughly analyzing risks before permits are issued, when threats to resources are potentially significant, and (4) place the burden of proof on resource users.

Nature-based businesses are a major economic force in coastal Georgia, although some segments are in decline, largely due to environmentally disruptive, negligent land uses and related activities. The Center is an essential voice in advocating protection of some 40,000 jobs supported by seafood processing, fishing, tourism, and recreation. These jobs depend directly on the diversity and health of coastal ecosystems. We oppose unwise activities threatening water quality, air quality, and ecosystems that are indispensible to both nature-based businesses and public health. And we promote innovative policies that balance environmental and economic objectives to serve the broad public interest.

We express our utmost gratitude to all those who have shared their views and funding resources with the Center since our establishment in June, 1997.

The board, advisors, and staff look forward to your growing involvement. We invite you to become more actively engaged in the Center's work as a volunteer, advocate, and contributor.

Note: Membership information is protected by our policy of confidentiality, and contact information about our members is never disclosed unless approved in advance by members.

The Center is grateful to the following foundations for the their financial support over the past year:
    - R. Howard Dobbs, Jr. Foundation
    - M. K. Pentecost Ecology Fund, Savannah Presbytery
    - The Sapelo Foundation
    - Sea Island Foundation
    - Bancker-Williams Foundation
    - Kendeda Foundation

We also express our thanks to scores of generous individuals, families, and businesses who have made tax-deductible donations to the Center. This year our average donation is over $200, but any amount contributed is greatly appreciated.
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