Bonamici Announces Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act
WASHINGTON, DC [10/20/20] – Today Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Co-Chair of the House Oceans Caucus and the only member of the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis from the Pacific Northwest, unveiled the Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act with Natural Resources Chair Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Chair Kathy Castor (D-FL). The bill is a comprehensive ocean climate package based on the Select Committee’s Climate Action Plan. The package includes provisions from Bonamici’s Blue Carbon for Our Planet Act, COAST Research Act, Water Power Research and Development Act, and BLUE GLOBE Act, as well as six other bills she co-led.
“Every person on this planet benefits from a healthy ocean, but for too long the ocean has literally taken the heat for us,” said Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici. “As Co-Chair of the House Oceans Caucus, I am leading efforts to capture the power of the ocean to be part of the solution in mitigating the climate crisis. I’m grateful to Chair Grijalva and Chair Castor for their partnership on this comprehensive bill, which is based on the Select Committee’s Climate Action Plan. The Ocean-Based Climate Solutions Act will address the climate crisis, protect our ocean, and advance marine energy as we work to build a clean energy economy. I’m pleased that this legislation includes many of my ocean climate bills, and I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues to advance meaningful policies to address the climate crisis.”
Click here for video of the Congresswoman’s remarks at today’s press conference on the bill.
Bonamici’s ocean priorities included in the legislation are:
- The Blue Carbon for Our Planet Act, which would create a national map and inventory of coastal blue carbon ecosystems, like mangroves, tidal marshes, seagrasses, and kelp forests, that can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it for centuries to millennia.
- The COAST Research Act, a comprehensive bill to confront the challenges of ocean acidification and coastal acidification and help coastal communities adapt.
- The Water Power Research and Development Act, which would scale up federal investments in marine energy, including the work at Oregon State University.
- The BLUE GLOBE Act, which would assess the potential of an Advanced Research Project Agency–Oceans (ARPA-O).
- The Shovel-Ready Restoration Grants for Coastlines and Fisheries Act, which is responsive to a House Oceans Caucus letter to Leadership requesting investments in coastal restoration and resilience projects to support and create good-paying jobs.
- The National Estuaries and Acidification Research (NEAR) Act, which would address the significant research gaps in our understanding of the effects of ocean and coastal acidification on our nation's estuaries.
- The Coastal Communities Ocean Acidification Act, which would direct NOAA to conduct vulnerability assessments to identify communities that are dependent on coastal and ocean resources that may be affected by ocean acidification.
- The Ocean Acidification Innovation Act, for federal agencies to increase efforts to research, monitor, and manage ocean acidification and its effects.
- The Living Shorelines Act, which would create a grant program to support natural infrastructure investments.
- The Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation System Act to strengthen monitoring of our ocean and coasts
As Co-Chair of the House Oceans Caucus and Congressional Estuary Caucus, Bonamici has long advocated for climate action and for the ocean to be part of the solution to mitigate the climate crisis. Bonamici is the only member from the Pacific Northwest to serve on the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. The Select Committee recently released a comprehensive Climate Action Plan that outlines a science-based path to reach net-zero emissions no later than mid-century and net-negative thereafter. It includes a focus on the needs of frontline communities, opportunities to accelerate the transition to a 100 percent clean energy economy, and ways to create good-paying jobs.