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A Voice for our Ocean

Ocean Conservancy Reacts to California Governor Newsom’s Actions on Plastic Pollution, Climate Disclosure Legislation

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SANTA CRUZ, CA – Over the weekend, California Governor Gavin Newsom took decisive action vetoing or signing dozens of environmental bills that passed the California legislature this fall. Ocean Conservancy’s experts were directly involved in shaping and advocating for several of the bills related to plastics and climate change.

On the mixed outcome of policies to address plastic pollution, Dr. Anja Brandon, Ocean Conservancy’s Associate Director of U.S. Plastics Policy, released the following statement:

“Given the serious threat that microfibers pose to the ocean and our health, we are surprised and deeply disappointed that Governor Newsom vetoed Assembly Bill 1628 to require microfiber filters on washing machines. The bill passed the legislature with strong support, and the Governor’s own Administration’s Statewide Microplastics Strategy endorsed this science-based approach to curb this major source of microplastic pollution. We will continue to pursue a path forward with the Governor, his Administration, our allies, and industry leaders to protect our ocean and communities from the growing threats and challenges posed by microplastic pollution.

“Despite the frustrating setback on the microfibers bill, we were pleased to see Governor Newsom protect the ambition and timely implementation of California’s Plastic Pollution Prevention and Packaging Producer Responsibility Act (SB 54), the strongest law to address the plastic pollution crisis ever enacted. We will continue our efforts with CalRecycle and other partners to ensure this landmark law achieves its goals of reducing plastic pollution at the source.”

On the passage of nation-leading Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act (SB 253) and the Climate-Related Financial Risk Act (SB 261), Aarthi Ananthanarayanan, Director of Ocean Conservancy’s Climate and Plastics Initiative, released the following statement:

“Ocean Conservancy applauds California’s leadership in enacting the nation’s first corporate climate risk disclosure legislation. Climate risk is already real for far too many coastal communities and businesses that are bearing the brunt of rising sea levels, severe storms, and changing ecosystems. We hope California’s leadership paves the way for federal rules through the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“These bills ensure that large companies that do business in California will have to disclose true costs of their business activities on the climate (i.e., their greenhouse gas emissions) across the entire value chain. This is critical – these value chain, or ‘Scope 3’ emissions represent the vast majority of greenhouse gas pollution. These bills also require companies to report on how they will manage climate-related financial risks and the transition to a clean energy economy – which helps hold major emitters, like fossil fuel companies and plastic producers, accountable. That’s good for our economy, for our coastal communities, and for the ocean.”

The cosponsor’s letter to the Governor asking for his signature on AB1628 can be found here.

Ocean Conservancy’s letter to the Governor asking for his signature for Senate Bill 253 and Senate Bill 261 can be found here and here, respectively.

The Governor’s letter explaining his signature for Senate Bill 253 and Senate Bill 261 can be found here and here, respectively.

An op-ed on the importance of climate disclosures written by Ocean Conservancy CEO Janis Searles Jones and Ocean Conservancy board member and investor Colin Le Duc can be found here.



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, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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