DearColleague.us

Letter

 

From: The Honorable Matt Cartwright
Sent By: Josh.Stephani@mail.house.gov
Bill: H.R. 2804
Date: 5/31/2016

Endorsing Organizations:  American Forests, American Rivers, Conservation Northwest, Defenders of Wildlife, Earthjustice, Endangered Species Coalition, National Audubon Society, National Wildlife Federation, National Parks Conservation Association, Outdoor Alliance, Restore America’s Estuaries, Rocky Mountain Wild, Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy, The Trust for Public Land, The Wilderness Society, The Wildlife Society, Wildlands Network, Wildlife Conservation Society, Winter Wildlands Alliance, World Wildlife Fund

Cosponsors (18):  Beyer, Connolly, Ellison, Grijalva, Honda, Huffman, Langevin, Lee, Lowenthal, Norton, Pocan, Polis, Quigley, Schiff, Tonko, Tsongas, Veasey, Walz,

 

Dear Colleague,

Increased incidents of prolonged drought, flooding, and extreme weather events, along with rising sea levels and average temperatures, are already affecting communities, economies, natural resources, and ecosystems across the United States. Since 1980, the U.S. has sustained 151 climate-related disasters where overall damages have reached or exceeded $1 billion, for a total cost in excess of $1 trillion. In response to Hurricane Sandy, Congress recently directed $360 million to address the natural resource impacts and build resilience of coastal areas to future storms. Over the past 50 years, sea level rose up to 8 inches or more along parts of the Atlantic and Gulf coasts and is already eroding shorelines and inundating wetlands.

Natural resources drive a critical sector of our national economy. According to a 2012 Outdoor Industry Association report, the total annual economic value of outdoor recreation – including camping, wildlife viewing, and hunting- equals $646 billion. As states depend on the economic activity generated by our natural resources to sustain local communities, it is important that we take action to protect these resources by preparing for future storms, more extreme weather and other conditions associated with
a changing climate.

H.R. 2804, the Safeguarding America’s Future and Environment (SAFE) Act, will do just that, by building on existing initiatives including the National Fish, Wildlife, and Plants Climate Adaptation Strategy. This legislation will:

  • require federal natural resource agencies to work together with state, tribal and local governments to create adaptation plans that identify actions and management efforts to protect and conserve natural resources in the face of uncertainty;
  • maximize government efficiency and reduce costs for natural resource protection;
  • encourage the development of state-specific adaptation plans; and
  • create a science advisory board to ensure that planning uses the best available science.

Also introduced in the Senate as S. 1601 by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, the SAFE Act helps government agencies and states effectively protect and conserve our country’s natural resources. Preparing now for a variable climate allows us to reduce our long-term costs and ensures that the countless benefits that natural resources provide to our country’s health, safety, and economy are preserved for the American people.

I encourage you to become a cosponsor of the SAFE Act.  Please contact Josh Stephani (Josh.Stephani@mail.house.gov or at x-55546) with any questions.

Sincerely,

 

Matt Cartwright

Member of Congress