North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

Conservation Data

To achieve “Green Growth,” communities need to use conservation data in planning activities. To start using the data:

  1. Download the Green Growth Toolbox dataset, and integrate the data with your community’s existing GIS database. Read section 2 of the handbook to learn about the dataset.
  2. Start using the data in visioning and plan-making—display the data on land use planning maps, and use these maps to help guide land use decision making.
  3. Use the data in crafting incentives and in ordinance and rule-setting—display the data on maps to determine districts for incentives and ordinances that encourage wildlife and natural resource conservation.
  4. Use the data in development site selection, review and design—consult the data before purchase of development tracts, when reviewing development applications and during development design. 

For ArcGIS users:

  • Click on the links below and download all files using the download instructions. You can view the data using the “ArcGIS GGT statewide map (.mxd)” linked below.

For non-GIS users:

    • If you do not use GIS, you can still view the data using FREE ArcReader software.
    • First, download all data files, including the “ArcReader GGT statewide map (.pmf)”. Be sure to follow the download instructions. 
    • Then, download the free ArcReader software package from the following website:
(Users should download the ArcReader 9.3.1 for Windows.  An account with ESRI, the software provider, needs to be established at no cost and the software is free.)


You can then open the “ArcReader GGT statewide map (.pmf)” to view the data.


To view the maps and data online go to the N.C. Natural Heritage Data Explorer at:

See Section 2 of the Handbook for more details

Click on Your Area to Download Clipped Statewide Datasets

Mountains Planning Group Metrolina Planning Group Southeast Planning Group Triad Planning Group Triangle Planning Group Northeast Planning Group

Click here to download only the additional ecological region data (regional data are clipped and available also by clicking your planning area above).