FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 24, 2021 — Led by sponsors Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN) and Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), the Growing Climate Solutions Act has achieved a major milestone: passage in the U.S. Senate. Today, the bill came up for a floor vote and was passed with a vote of 92 to 8.
This legislation recognizes that farmers could play a major role in mitigating climate change. It will help farmers and forest landowners financially, while incentivizing them to make their operations more sustainable. On Earth Day of this year, the Growing Climate Solutions Act advanced out of the Senate Agriculture Committee, and its support has only continued to build since then. By the time of today’s floor vote, the bill was cosponsored by more than half of all U.S. Senators: 27 Democrats, 26 Republicans, and one Independent.
Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) has supported this legislation since its initial introduction. Our volunteers have brought it up in hundreds of lobby meetings in recent years, and they sent 4,532 messages about the bill to Senate offices in May alone.
“We are happy CCL was able to play a role in advancing this positive and pragmatic legislation, and we’re proud that it has passed with such overwhelming bipartisan support,” said Danny Richter, CCL Vice President of Government Affairs. “CCL staff and supporters are especially grateful to Senators Braun and Stabenow for their leadership on this issue.”
The Growing Climate Solutions Act “was very well received in meetings with both Republican and Democratic offices,” said Ben Pendergrass, CCL Senior Director of Government Affairs, after our volunteers’ initial lobbying push on the bill in June 2020.
Pendergrass emphasized that in early 2021, saying, “Our volunteers really leaned in on lobbying for this bill, and many of the Republican cosponsors heard a lot from the volunteers about this.”
Today, CCL applauds this important milestone. “In times like these, Americans need to see that our elected leaders can work together to solve our biggest problems,” said Mark Reynolds, CCL Executive Director. “The passage of this bill is an encouraging example of productive bipartisan effort on climate.”
In a press conference immediately following this morning’s vote, climate hawk and bill cosponsor Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) praised the policy, pointing out that “a verifiable carbon credit in the agriculture sector is perhaps the most important tool to deal with climate change in that sector.”
Sen. Braun praised farmers as “natural stewards” and celebrated the fact that this bill rewards their efforts to “reverse what is happening to the environment, to our atmosphere, to climate in general.” He noted the broad support the legislation enjoys from young conservatives, evangelicals, farmers themselves, and others. Watch the press conference here:
The Senate has just passed @SenStabenow’s #GrowingClimateSolutions Act! @SenStabenow and @SenatorBraun are discussing this historic bipartisan climate bill – the first one in the Senate to engage farmers and foresters as part of the solution. Tune in: https://t.co/AF6bNbuPoW
— Senate Ag, Nutrition, & Forestry Committee Dems (@SenateAgDems) June 24, 2021
For the Growing Climate Solutions Act to become law, it now needs to move through the lower chamber of Congress. A House version of the legislation is already under consideration, introduced by Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) in April of this year. The House bill is cosponsored by 18 Democrats and 14 Republicans, reinforcing the bill’s bipartisan appeal.
CONTACT: CCL Communications Director Flannery Winchester, , 615-337-3642