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Statement: Florida Governor Signs Law Establishing a New Resiliency Office

Ocean Conservancy commends lawmakers for taking action as Florida is threatened by rising sea levels

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ST. PETERSBURG, FL – The following statement was issued by Jon Paul “J.P.” Brooker, director of Florida Conservation at Ocean Conservancy:

“This will ensure accountability within the Governor’s Office and provide a single point of contact responsible for planning and implementing a strategy to ensure the state’s resilience against rising waters and other challenges created by a changing ocean and climate. We are grateful for the leadership of Speaker Chris Sprowls for ushering this legislation along.

“Until now, there’s been no consistency as to what sea level rise data agencies should use. Sometimes, they were using incorrect or outdated data, meaning projects are being built at lower heights, making them more vulnerable to being inundated by a rising sea. While many local governments have made resilience a priority for their own communities, this statewide strategy is necessary for meeting Florida’s resilience challenges head-on,” said Jon Paul “J.P.” Brooker, Director of Florida Conservation at Ocean Conservancy.

Ocean Conservancy had called on Florida lawmakers to pass the measure in an effort to combat flooding and sea level rise. The legislation requires the development of a resilience action plan for the state highway system. As part of the assessment, the department will be required to use the most up-to-date National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration precipitation frequency and sea level rise data. The bill also calls for the creation of a database that would identify infrastructure threatened by sea level rise.

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Jon Paul “J.P.” Brooker is available for virtual interviews via Zoom or in-person in the St. Pete/Tampa Bay area.

About Ocean Conservancy

Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create evidence-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it. For more information, visit http://www.oceanconservancy.org, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram

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