CA Assembly Passes CARBON Act - Pacific Forest Trust

Summer 2017 ForestLife

California Assembly Passes CARBON Act

Nature-Based Solutions Win Bipartisan Support

In May, Assembly Bill 1433, the Climate Adaptation and Resilience Based on Nature (CARBON) Act, passed the California Assembly with solid bipartisan support—a major acknowledgment of the climate benefits of investing in forests and other working and natural lands.

Forests are California’s—and the world’s—largest, safest, and most expandable carbon sinks. Natural and working lands are also a great investment for climate, producing multiple benefits of reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, while also enhancing clean water supplies, protecting habitat, and sustaining rural economies at very low cost. But until now, restoration and conservation of natural and working lands have received less than 3% of the total funds generated by California’s cap-and-trade program.

AB 1433 has raised the profile of forests, farms, and other natural and working lands and their role in reducing CO and promoting climate adaptation. It acknowledges the merit and impact of investing in this sector, equivalent with the transportation and energy sectors.

“Our natural and working lands play a vital role in stabilizing our climate,” said the bill’s author Assembly Member Jim Wood when the CARBON Act was introduced. “By investing in restoring and protecting these natural systems, we increase our ability to fight climate change and also promote sustainable rural economies.”

The bill moved on to the Senate, where it continued to be debated and to evolve—but whatever the outcome, forests and other lands are gaining a more significant and appropriate place in the discussion about climate change solutions in California.

“There is enormous potential to reabsorb CO2 emissions back into our forests, wetlands, and soils, and it will benefit all Californians.”

– Andrea Tuttle, Pacific Forest Trust Board Chair