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Comment 62 for Draft 2022 Climate Change Scoping Plan (scopingplan2022) - Non-Reg.

First NameKathleen
Last NameJacecko
Email Addresscurlgirl72@yahoo.com
Affiliation
SubjectCalifornias coastal wetlands are a climate solution
Comment

I write to express my support for the California Air Resources Board (CARB) 2022 Climate Change Scoping Plan and offer suggestions to strengthen the natural working lands targets to better reflect the importance of Californias coastal habitats. Our state has felt firsthand the effects of intensifying wildfires, record heat waves, and severe droughts, making nature-based solutions that harness coastal wetlands carbon-absorbing properties a crucial element to advance emission reduction goals.

Specifically, I ask CARB to:

Endorse the draft plans recommendation to restore at least 60,000 acres of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to reduce emissions, restart carbon burial, and provide flood mitigation, water quality, and biodiversity benefits to the region and state.

Include an acreage target and related management strategies for ALL of the states coastal wetlands, including San Francisco Bay, Eel River Estuary, and Humboldt Bay, and the sloughs and pocket estuaries found along the central and south coasts.

Improve accounting for coastal wetlands, including tidal marsh, scrub-shrub, swamps, and seagrass, in the states Natural and Working Lands greenhouse gas inventory, drawing upon established U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change methodologies for these habitats. And collaborate with state agencies and research institutions to incorporate newly released and existing localized data sets into the inventory.
California has lost an estimated 90% of its wetlands after decades of diking, draining, dredging, damming, development, and other impacts. And eelgrass has faced extensive loss in the state because of excess sedimentation resulting from land use practices, pollution, and direct impacts from coastal infrastructure. Morro Bay, site of a National Estuary Program, has experienced a massive die-off in eelgrass habitat, with declines of more than 90% since 2007. Sea level rise will accelerate this loss if eelgrass beds, tidal marsh, and other coastal habitats are unable to migrate shoreward.

These losses harm wildlife and people alike. Coastal wetlands sustain resource- and recreation-dependent coastal people and economies, protect cultural resources, improve water quality, and reduce flooding. And the climate benefit of coastal wetlands can have a flipside: Their destruction releases this stored carbon back into the atmosphere.

I applaud CARB for developing the draft 2022 Climate Change Scoping Plan and formally recognizing the role of natural and working lands in this plan. I urge you not to miss the opportunity to protect and expand the states blue carbon sinks by including strong measures for ALL of the states coastal wetlands.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this important issue.


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Date and Time Comment Was Submitted 2022-06-23 11:42:31

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