Right-of-Center Groups Push Republican Lawmakers to Support Growing Climate Solutions Act

Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions, R Street Institute, American Conservation Coalition, ConservAmerica, National Taxpayers Union join forces to advocate for bipartisan bill

WASHINGTON (July 29, 2020) – A group of leading conservative organizations joined forces today in advocating for a piece of innovative, limited-government climate legislation that would make it easier for American farmers, ranchers and private landowners to share information and best practices, and to access private sector carbon markets should they choose to voluntarily adopt emissions-reducing agriculture and land management practices and technologies.

In a letter to Republican members of Congress, Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions (CRES), R Street Institute, American Conservation Coalition, ConservAmerica, and the National Taxpayers Union asked for passage of The Growing Climate Solutions Act (S.3894/H.R.7393).

The Growing Climate Solutions Act is bipartisan legislation recently introduced by Senators Mike Braun (R-IN) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) in the Senate and Representatives Don Bacon (R-NE), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), Jim Baird (R-IN), John Katko (R-NY) and John Curtis (R-UT) in the House.

The groups applauded The Growing Climate Solutions Act for adhering to conservative principles as it establishes a voluntary framework for certifying third-party credits; provides technical assistance to land managers; and establishes an Advisory Council of diverse environmental, agricultural, scientific, and business interests to help define the proper role for the federal government in these markets. Importantly, this much-needed bill would provide additional revenue streams to our struggling agricultural sector by sequestering greenhouse gases in soil. Additionally, it will reduce confusion among market participants and improve information-sharing among farmers looking to implement best practices that capture carbon, reduce emissions, and improve soil health.

Collectively, the groups see this legislation as an opportunity to offer effective, meaningful, and fiscally responsible policies that can be enacted right now to mitigate the effects of climate change. By incenting more people to monetize credits by implementing carbon management best practices—or by allowing corporations to finance those practices—the scale of the solution grows.

The groups had this to say:

“Farmers and ranchers are the backbone of our food systems and now they can be the backbone of our efforts to reduce emissions,” said CRES Vice President for Policy and Advocacy Charles Hernick. “This particularly is a win for small and medium-sized farmers who can compete for money offered through carbon sequestration. Further, the focus on voluntary programs adheres to a commonsense conservative principle that will pay dividends.”

“The Growing Climate Solutions Act validates pathways to free market environmentalism,” said Devin Hartman, Director of Energy and Environmental Policy, R Street Institute. “It reduces barriers to participation and improves the credibility of carbon offsets, which are vital conditions for carbon sequestration markets to flourish.”

“Natural solutions are a vital tool in the fight against climate change,” said Quill Robinson, Vice President of Government Affairs, American Conservation Coalition. “The Growing Climate Solutions Act empowers America’s farmers and foresters, making it easier for them to use their expertise to sequester carbon and ensure a more sustainable future. The American Conservation Coalition thanks Senators Braun and Stabenow for their leadership and looks forward to working with them on this important piece of legislation.”

“The framework established in the Growing Climate Solutions Act will encourage greater private-sector participation in carbon offset markets and reduce emissions,” said Jeff Kupfer, President of ConservAmerica. “It opens the door to new economic opportunities for farmers and foresters and benefits the environment.”

“National Taxpayers Union is pleased to support the Growing Climate Solutions Act — an innovative, voluntary approach to improving the environment without relying on heavy-handed regulations or new taxes,” said Brandon Arnold, Executive Vice President, National Taxpayers Union.

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