Oysters being poured from one basket to another.
Fishers Island Oysters being unloaded on Fishers Island, NY. © Christopher Simpson

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Shellfish Groups Urge Climate Action in Infrastructure and Reconciliation Bills

In a letter sent to Congressional leadership, the Shellfish Growers Climate Coalition (SGCC), the East Coast Shellfish Growers Climate Association (ECSGA), the Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association (PCSGA), and Oyster South emphasized the need for strong climate provisions in the infrastructure and reconciliation bills and urged swift passage of both.

The signatories, which represents thousands of shellfish businesses across the country, cited the “grim conditions” the industry is facing as a result of climate change, including higher temperatures, more extreme storms, rising sea levels, and ocean acidification. “Financial and environmental pressures have already forced some growers to leave the industry, and more will likely follow,” the letter warns, which could have “devastating consequences for coastal communities that depend on shellfish for jobs and food security.”

Though the prognosis is bleak, “prompt and decisive action can save our oceans and our planet from the worst-case projected scenarios.” As such, the group asserted that “it is absolutely imperative that the climate provisions in the current bills are passed quickly and fully intact” and are “followed by meaningful and sustained action to decarbonize the economy and build resilience.”

Read the full letter here.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 75 countries and territories: 37 by direct conservation impact and 38 through partners, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.