MACo Calls for Increased Investment in Shoreline Restoration

On February 15, 2023, Associate Policy Director Dominic Butchko testified before the Senate Education, Energy, and the Environment Committee in support of SB 0417 – Environment – State Wetlands – Shoreline Restoration.

The House Environment and Transportation Committee will consider the bill’s cross-file, HB 0602, on February 22.

SB 0417 requires the Department of the Environment, in coordination with the Department of Natural Resources, to designate priority shoreline restoration zones where conditions exist that degrade the resilience of costal habitats. The bill also establishes a specially designated fund to augment the State’s efforts to ensure costal resilience and living shoreline restoration. For those counties looking to advance shoreline restoration projects as a means of protection against climate-driven erosion, SB 0417 represents a welcome and timely investment.

From the MACo Testimony:

Maryland has one of the largest coastlines within the United States. The Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean shape the cultural and economic landscape of the state. Mitigating against erosion and sea level rise is both a fact of life and a critical function of state and local government. SB 417 provides counties as well as other coastal landholders with additional resources to undergo shoreline restoration projects. Ironically for a state with such a vast coastline, there has been a historic lack of investment in shoreline restoration. This program represents the first step in sharpening a powerful tool to combat erosion and sea level rise.

More on MACo’s Advocacy:

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2023 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database

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Read more General Assembly News on MACo’s Conduit Street blog