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House passes Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act

Elaine LuriaThe House of Representatives passed on Tuesday the Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act (H.R. 729).

This bipartisan bill contains an amendment from Virginia Democrat Elaine Luria advancing the coastal resiliency of military communities.

“Rising sea levels and recurrent flooding present immense challenges to communities throughout Hampton Roads as well as our nation’s military readiness,” Congresswoman Luria said. “My amendment improves H.R. 729 to better position military communities in Coastal Virginia.”

H.R. 729 would establish a grant program directing the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to award grants to state and local governments to implement living shoreline projects. These projects restore and stabilize shorelines, including marshes, wetlands, and other parts of the shoreline ecosystem by using materials such as plants and oyster shells.

Congresswoman Luria’s amendment would ensure that the NOAA considers the potential of a living shoreline project that support resiliency at military installations or community infrastructure supportive of a military installation.

The Department of Defense’s 2019 Report on the Effects of a Changing Climate found “the greater Hampton Roads area is one of the most vulnerable to flooding military installations in the United States.” Congresswoman Luria’s amendment would encourage the NOAA to fund projects that bolster these installations from the threats of imminent flooding.

The amendment passed the House today in a 368-51 vote.

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