The National Wildlife Federation

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Coastal Enhancement Legislation Will Help Protect Communities, Wildlife from Climate Impacts

Washington, DC — Investing in America’s coastal resources is essential to safeguard communities and wildlife habitat against more extreme storms, floods and rising sea levels. The National Wildlife Federation heralded the Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act (H.R. 729), which will provide resources and tools to invest in coastal restoration efforts across the country.

“As climate change fuels stronger storms, floods and rising sea levels that batter our communities, Congressional leadership is crucial to chart a path to more resilient shorelines. To help communities and wildlife adapt and thrive in the face of climate impacts, the National Wildlife Federation supports the Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act,” said Jessie Ritter, director of water resources and coastal policy for the National Wildlife Federation. “This legislation smartly enhances resilience on multiple fronts, equipping communities with information, planning assistance, and implementation resources to shore up resilience, including through investment in natural solutions.”

A few highlights of the Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act include:

  • The Living Shorelines Act (H.R. 3115), establishing a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration program to help communities construct living shorelines projects – making them more resilient while improving wildlife habitat. 
  • The National Fish Habitat Conservation Through Partnerships Act (H.R. 1747), to conserve fish and habitat through partnerships that improve fishing, recreation, and communities. 
  • Authorizing other critical programs that strengthen coastal communities and our nation: the Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observing System, the National Sea Grant College Program, and NOAA’s Digital Coast.

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More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 52 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

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