A Voice for Our Ocean

Statement: President Biden’s Executive Orders are Wins for the Climate and Ocean

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Washington, DC – The following statement was issued by Janis Searles Jones, CEO of Ocean Conservancy, on the Biden-Harris administration’s Executive Orders issued on January 27, 2021:

 “President Biden is on his way to becoming the Climate President by making climate change a central piece of his domestic and foreign policy. By pausing new oil leases, committing to protect at least 30% of our land and ocean, and centering climate action around justice, these Executive Orders are necessary steps towards responding to the climate crisis and are huge wins for our ocean as well. 127 million Americans live in a coastal county. They are on the front lines of sea level rise, worsening storms and warming ocean temperatures, all of which hurt local communities, Tribes, livelihoods, cultures and family traditions. With these actions, President Biden is wasting no time in addressing the threat that climate change poses to our country, our ocean, and our coastal neighbors. Most importantly, he is basing his actions in science to protect everyone, including those historically marginalized and pushed aside, from the devastating effects of climate change that will worsen if we don’t act now.”


Notes to Editors:

The Executive Orders include the following:

  • A pause on new oil and natural gas leases on public lands or offshore waters
  • The establishment of a Civilian Climate Corps Initiative
  • The protection of at least 30 percent of our lands and ocean by 2030
  • Directs the Department of Interior to explore doubling offshore wind production by 2030
  • Kicks off the process of developing the U.S. nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement
  • Formally establishes the White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy
  • NOAA will begin collecting input on how to make fisheries and protected resources more resilient to climate change, including changes in management and conservation, and improvements in science, monitoring and cooperative research
  • Commits to making environmental justice a part of the mission of every federal agency
  • Establishes a White House Environmental Justice Interagency Council and a White House Environmental Justice Advisory Board
  • Creates a government-wide Justice40 Initiative
  • Initiates the development of a Climate and Environmental Justice Screening Tool
  • Issues the Presidential Memorandum on Scientific Integrity and Evidence-Based Policymaking

Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create science-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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