Western Governors request close consultation on National Climate Task Force review of “30 by 30” conservation proposal

Western Governors request close consultation during the National Climate Task Force review of reports by the Departments of Interior and Agriculture as described in Section 216 of Executive Order (EO) 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad. The Governors' outreach of May 6, 2021, to National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy acknowledges the Task Force's goals of recommending steps to achieve conservation of "at least 30 percent of our lands and waters by 2030.” They will accomplish that by reviewing reports by the Department of the Interior on conserving land and water, and the Department of Agriculture's “recommendations for an agricultural and forestry climate strategy” encouraging voluntary adoption of climate-smart agricultural and forestry practices that decrease wildfire risk and results in verifiable carbon reductions and sequestration.” The Governors note that defining “conserved" will be a critical factor, as many lands in the region already enjoy robust conservation protections. And they remind that any conservation strategy that relies heavily on federal land could disproportionately affect western states. The outreach signed by WGA Chair Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Vice Chair Idaho Gov. Brad Little expresses the Governors' appreciation for previous engagement by the Departments of the Interior and Agriculture and the White House Council on Environmental Quality on aspects of the "30 by 30" proposal. "Western states have a rich base of experience to inform the consideration of policies to implement the 30 by 30 proposal," the outreach concludes, "and we look forward to working collaboratively and constructively with you." Read, download letter

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