SACRAMENTO – A bill by Assemblymember Dawn Addis (D-Morro Bay) that requires California to build a strong science-based monitoring program to better understand the impact of offshore wind energy development on ocean life and habitat passed its first committee today.
The legislation – Assembly Bill 80 – passed out of the Assembly Natural Resources Committee by a unanimous and bipartisan vote of 11-0.
It's critical that we maintain California's strong commitment to ocean and coastal protections while we build offshore wind energy," Addis said. "This bill will help California follow, collect and fund scientific research on offshore wind energy in marine environments and make that research available to decision makers and the public."
Specifically, AB 80 requires the Ocean Protection Council to create a science entity to coordinate and oversee the scientific research and monitoring that decision-makers need ahead of and during the development of offshore wind energy.
The bill is co-sponsored by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Natural Resources Defense Council. The Assembly Natural Resources Committee voted to send AB 80 to its next stop – the Assembly Appropriations Committee. The bill is co-authored by Senator John Laird (D-Santa Cruz). During the committee hearing, Assemblymembers Rich Chavez Zbur (D-West Hollywood) and Gail Pellerin (D-Santa Cruz) added on as co-authors.
In December, the federal government leased five offshore wind areas along California's coast – three off the coast of San Luis Obispo County, and two off the coast of Humboldt County.
CONTACT: Jim Evans, 916-319-2030