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New Bill Harnesses Ocean, Coasts as Part of Climate Solution

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Strengthening the nation’s investments in and research on protecting and restoring marine and coastal environments is crucial for ensuring a healthy future for wildlife and coastal communities, particularly vulnerable communities whose economies rely on a healthy ocean. The Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act, sponsored by House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), advances a wide suite of programs and strategies to naturally sequester carbon, enhance coastal community resilience, and enable marine and coastal wildlife to adapt to changing conditions. 

“Coastal communities, along with coastal and ocean habitats, are facing grave threats to their futures due to the effects of climate change,” said Jessie Ritter, director of water resources and coastal policy at the National Wildlife Federation. “This bill, through Chairman Grijalva and other co-sponsors’ leadership, will not only help coastal communities and marine wildlife adapt to the impacts of climate change but will also maximize the potential of ocean and coastal resources to act as natural climate solutions.” 

Among many other important provisions, the Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act would expand activities to protect blue carbon ecosystems; increase resources for coastal resilience, adaptation, and restoration, including through living shorelines and coastal wetlands grants; promote climate-ready fisheries; and enhance data collection and monitoring efforts on issues ranging from fisheries to toxic algal outbreaks.

 

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