Assembly Approves Calderon Bill Establishing California Adaptation Leadership and Coordination Act of 2019

Monday, May 6, 2019

Sacramento, CA – The Assembly approved Assembly Bill 975 today, a measure authored by Assembly Majority Leader Ian Calderon, which establishes the California Adaptation Leadership and Coordination Act of 2019.

“It’s critical that we work closely with nations across the globe to preserve the beauty of our oceans,” stated Majority Leader Ian Calderon. “California is an environmental leader in conservation and we have the privilege of enjoying a beautiful coastline and an ocean that contributes significantly to our state’s economy. However, we must pay close attention to coastal erosion and pollution, which threatens the health of our shared environment.”

Climate change endangers the world’s oceans and marine wildlife. Over the past century, marine heatwaves have become longer and more frequent around the world. The number of marine heatwave days has increased by 54% between the years 1987 to 2016, compared to the years between 1925-1954.  Ocean acidification, sea level rise, and warming ocean temperatures threaten to irrevocably alter California’s coastal ecosystems and our $45 billion ocean-based economy. Additionally, California’s Fourth Climate Assessment estimates about $17 billion in infrastructure damage by 2050 due to sea-level rise.

The Secretary of Natural Resources currently oversees protection of the ocean and coast with the assistance of state agencies and outside partners.  However, there is no requirement that calls for the Secretary to collaborate with countries, states, and other non-Californian coastal governments on how to protect coastal and marine habitats. Lack of communication exists when it comes to our efforts in sustainable fisheries, coral reef conservation, ocean monitoring, limiting offshore drilling, and the dangerous proliferation of marine plastic pollution.

AB 975 establishes the California Adaptation Leadership and Coordination Act of 2019. This Act requires the Secretary of the Natural Resources Agency to collaborate with other countries, states, regional collaboratives and subnational governments to support and promote the state’s goals, policies, and best management practices relating to ocean, coastal, and terrestrial adaptation.

AB 975 is supported by the California Coastkeeper Alliance, Engdangered Habitats League, Ocean Conservancy, Save the Redwoods League, and Surfrider Foundation.

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Contact: Lerna Shirinian (562) 692-5858