Tweaking the Climate Change Adaptation Proposal

Alejandro Camacho

May 5, 2009

On Thursday, Rep. Raul Grijalva introduced HR 2192, a bill on adapting to the impacts of climate change. The law would establish a "Natural Resources Climate Change Adaptation Panel" that would create a plan for several federal agencies to anticipate and seek to mitigate the effects of a changed planet.

The bill is very similar to the natural resource adaptation provisions (Title IV, Subtitle E, Subpart C) in the Waxman-Markey draft climate change legislation. Those provisions were a good start, though certainly not perfect (Holly Doremus and I previously analyzed the good and the bad of those provisions here).

E&E News reported  (subscription required) that Grijalva's bill, along with a separate one in the works in the House Science Committee, are "expected to be voted on before Memorial Day and eventually to be folded into Waxman-Markey." If it came to it, should Waxman-Markey stumble, this bill could go ahead separately.

Rep. Grijalva's bill makes some changes, including:

  • An increased funding allocation for Indian tribes from 1% to 3% and decreased allocations for State coastal organizations (1.5%) and NOAA (0.5%) from a newly created Natural Resources Climate Change Adaptation Account that would fund natural resources adaptation activities.
  • The creation of a National Wildlife Habitat and Corridors Information Program to develop a geographic information system database on fish and wildlife habitat and corridors to aid Federal, State, local, and tribal adaptation efforts.
  • Savings clause language intended to preserve existing Federal trust responsibilities to Indian tribes.

I'd still like to see improvement particularly on three areas that we critiqued in the Waxman-Markey language on natural resource adaptation. That language failed to come to grips with the problem of identifying clear goals for natural resource adaptation efforts. Like the Waxman-Markey bill, Grijalva’s bill also continues to mandate a separate natural resource adaptation planning effort rather than integrating adaptation into existing planning and implementation structures. Finally, both bills only mandate natural resource adaptation planning by a few resource management agencies, failing to engage some important federal agencies in key aspects of the adaptation effort.

Read More by Alejandro Camacho
More on CPR's Work & Scholars.
May 4, 2022

Clarifying the Congressional Review Act

May 2, 2022

Taking the Supreme Court's Temperature on Global Warming

April 27, 2022

New Report: Democratizing Our Regulatory System Is More Important Than Ever. Can FERC Lead the Way?

April 26, 2022

HBO Max Series Highlights Need for Stronger Regulation of Cosmetics Industry

April 25, 2022

Biden Undoes NEPA Rollback

April 22, 2022

The Clean Water Act's Midlife Crisis

April 21, 2022

Protecting Future Generations, Just as Earlier Ones Sought to Protect Us