U.S. Policy: Coastal Climate Change Planning Legislation Introduced in House

California Coast - NOAA
The Coastal State Climate Change Planning Act (H.R. 4314) was reintroduced in the U.S. House of Representatives earlier this month (previous versions were presented in the 110th and 111th Congresses). It would amend the Coastal Zone Management Act, established to assist coastal states in developing and implementing coastal zone management plans in order to "preserve, protect, develop, and where possible, to restore or enhance the resources of the nation's coastal zone," in order to "require the Secretary of Commerce to establish a coastal climate change adaptation planning and response program." This amendment was introduced by Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) and specifically calls for a program that would provide technical and financial assistance and training to states willing to develop coastal adaptation plans that abide by the guidelines set out in Section 306 of the CZMA. Plans should include:
  • identification of vulnerable coastal resources;
  • adaptive management strategies (e.g., conservation of biodiversity, protection of water quality, establishment of migration corridors, buffer zones, and climate refugia); and
  • long-term monitoring for environmental changes and assessment of adaptation measures.
The bill is currently in the House Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs.