San Mateo, CA - Congresswoman Jackie Speier (CA-14) today announced the introduction of her San Francisco Bay Restoration Act, which would authorize $50 million per year for five years for restoration efforts and establish a San Francisco Bay Program Office within the Environmental Protection Agency. The bill has 10 cosponsors: Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), Jared Huffman (CA-2), John Garamendi (CA-3), Mike Thompson (CA-5), Jerry McNerney (CA-9), Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11), Barbara Lee (CA-13), Ro Khanna (CA-17), Anna Eshoo (CA-18), Zoe Lofgren (CA-19).
Rep. Speier held a press conference to announce the new legislation that included Congressman Jared Huffman, California Secretary for Environmental Protection Jared Blumenfeld and Save the Bay Executive Director David Lewis.
“San Francisco Bay is a national treasure and the lifeblood of our region, producing over $370 billion in goods and services annually and supporting more than 4 million jobs,” Rep. Speier said. “Tragically, the federal government has been complicit in its deterioration. The $250 million authorized in my bill would go a long way towards restoring wetlands and estuaries, helping endangered species recover, and study water quality improvement and adaptation to climate change. It’s a smart and necessary long-term investment.”
“The San Francisco Bay plays a vital role in the economy of our region -- generating hundreds of billions of dollars in economic activity every year. But, due largely to human activity, 90% of the Bay’s wetlands have been destroyed,” Rep. Huffman said. “It’s time the federal government does its part to support climate adaptation and restoration funding, and I am pleased to support Congresswoman Speier’s bill to provide the much-needed federal partnership to help improve water quality in this important estuary, revive the Bay Area’s wetlands, and protect our coastal communities and our economy.”
Rep. Speier added, “San Francisco Bay has been short-changed compared to other estuaries in the U.S. Between 2008 and 2016, EPA geographic programs invested only $45 million into the San Francisco Bay, while Puget Sound received over $260 million dollars and Chesapeake Bay $490 million. That’s ten times as much – and the disparity becomes even more pronounced when you consider the populations served. A mere $6 was spent on the Bay for each resident of the Bay Area, while almost $30 were spent for each resident living near Chesapeake Bay and almost $60 for residents near Puget Sound. This bill would also finally give the Bay the recognition it deserves.”
Who: Congresswoman Jackie Speier
Congressman Jared Huffman
Jared Blumenfeld, California Secretary for Environmental Protection
David Lewis, Executive Director of Save the Bay
What: Zoom press conference on San Francisco Bay Restoration Act
When: Thursday, January 28th, 2021, 2 p.m. PT
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