Derek Kilmer

A Victory for National Oceans Month!June 18, 2019

I’m proud to share some exciting news! This month, nearly 400 Members of Congress voted to pass a bill I authored to help combat ocean acidification! The bill, along with three others that passed the House this month, is great news for the oceans and the Pacific Northwest!

June is National Oceans Month, an occasion to raise awareness of the crucial role that our oceans play. Here in the Pacific Northwest, we know our oceans are vital to our environment, economy, and our way of life.

We have a responsibility to protect our environment from the impacts of climate change. And one of the most distressing effects of climate change in our region has been the changing chemistry of our oceans.

The waters of the Pacific Northwest support a wide range of species, including shellfish like oysters and mussels. In coastal communities, we’ve seen long histories of fishing and shellfish growing by tribes, commercial enterprises, and by folks doing it recreationally. Those activities have been put at risk, though, by changing ocean chemistry which has made it increasingly difficult for marine life to generate shells, threatening the food chain and the jobs that are dependent on these species.

My bill, called the Ocean Acidification Innovation Act, will encourage more research and resources to solve the complex problem of changing ocean chemistry. We have some of the best farmers, fishers, and scientists here in the Northwest working on ocean acidification and it’s time that the Federal government joined as a partner to help find a solution.

There’s plenty more to do to combat climate change, but I’m proud my bill passed the House with strong bipartisan support. I’m hopeful the Senate will act soon. We can make progress on this issue and I will continue to work to that end. Thank you for your support!