Legislation to cut unnecessary green tape and increase sea-level rise mitigation initiatives along the California coast heads to the Governor’s desk for signature after passing on the Assembly floor on a 63-0 vote. Authored by Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris, AB 72 will establish a coordinated and efficient process for coastal adaptation permitting.
“The valuable time, expertise and resources of scientists working to combat sea-level rise should be spent on solutions, not bureaucracy,” said Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach). “Time is of the essence as seas continue to rise along our coast, and we cannot waste resources trying to navigate unnecessary green tape.”
California boasts over 1,100 miles of breathtaking coast that nearly 70% of Californians call home. Over the course of this century, sea levels are expected to rise by 7 feet, putting millions of people and billions of dollars at risk. Scientists have determined that coastal adaptation initiatives are one of the most promising strategies to combat sea-level rise.
When applying for a coastal adaptation project, applicants must often submit dozens of permits to varying state agencies. Each agency then undertakes its own independent review on its own timeline with its own requirements. This current protracted and uncoordinated review process causes unnecessary delays for valuable coastal adaptation projects and hinders innovative approaches to addressing sea-level rise.
AB 72 would direct the California Natural Resources Agency to evaluate and implement a more coordinated and efficient regulatory review process for coastal adaptation projects, and report to the Legislature on suggestions for improvement by July 1, 2023.
This bill is supported by the California Environmental Justice League, East Bay Park District, Surfrider Foundation, AZUL and the California Coastkeeper Alliance.