Chesapeake Conservancy Applauds Introduction of the Comprehensive Conservation Finance Act in Maryland Senate

Annapolis, MD – Maryland Senator Jim Rosapepe (District 21) has introduced the Comprehensive Conservation Finance Act (SB 737). This bill would make several changes to Maryland’s state code in order to facilitate greater private, for-profit investment in environmental conservation and restoration projects in Maryland and to help Marylanders take advantage of new market opportunities such as carbon markets and green infrastructure projects.

The bill also includes provisions to advance environmental justice goals in Maryland by expanding the use of State Revolving Funds to support projects in disadvantaged communities and by initiating policy review for a ‘human right to water’ akin to policy adopted by the State of California.

President and CEO of Chesapeake Conservancy Joel Dunn applauded the legislation, stating,

“If investors managing trillions in assets like BlackRock are looking for ways to push resources into climate and water solutions, we should listen. This legislation is about making Maryland a good place for investment in the planet.

“I thank Senator Rosapepe for his environmental leadership in sponsoring the Comprehensive Conservation Finance Act to unlock new opportunities for private capital investment in environmental restoration and conservation efforts in Maryland, such as the conservation and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay. Given the monumental crises of global climate change and species extinction, the immediate need to address environmental injustices and direct environmental resources to disadvantaged communities, and the ever-growing demands on public resources, we need to think differently and exercise all options.

“The Comprehensive Conservation Finance Act would help Maryland to better encourage private capital investment in environmental projects and harness the power of financial markets to achieve environmental goals. With the global carbon credit market generating over $200 billion in 2019, and with billions more invested in environmental conservation and restoration projects, I ask Maryland’s General Assembly to pass the Comprehensive Conservation Finance Act.

“It is thrilling to be working in conservation at a time when there are so many exciting ways to make progress happen faster. This legislation will speed up the scale and pace of improving the Bay.”