Kaptur Civilian Conservation Corps Bill Included in Sweeping Climate Change Plan Unveiled by House Democrats
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, released the following statement in support of the sweeping climate change plan unveiled by the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. The plan, titled Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient, and Just America, is the most aggressive climate action plan ever put forth by the U.S. Congress. The plan includes the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act, legislation introduced by Rep. Kaptur to reestablish the historic Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The act would reduce unemployment while protecting America’s natural resources and combatting the effects of climate change.
“As Americans grapple with the economic fallout resulting from COVID-19, a federal jobs program like the Civilian Conservation Corps not only makes sense, it is desperately needed,” said Rep. Kaptur. “The dual challenges of putting Americans back to work following COVID-19 and taking substantive action to prevent further climate change will take bold, outside the box proposals and difficult conversations. The fact that my CCC bill was included in Democrats’ climate change plan proves that Congress is not only ready to have that conversation, it is ready to move forward.”
“Reestablishing the CCC would provide unemployed Americans with the opportunity to serve their country through work opportunities that rebuild our natural treasures and roll back the effects of climate change. Members of the 21st Century CCC will engage in the prevention of forest fires, floods and soil erosion; reforestation and eradication of invasive species and flora disease control; and the modernization, design, and construction of trails and facilities throughout our nation’s natural spaces. This legislation has never been as important as it is now. I thank my colleagues on the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and look forward to working with them and all Members to move bold proposals like the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act forward and over the finish line.”
The 21st Century Civilian Conservation Act:
The 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act would authorize the President of the United States to establish a Civilian Conservation Corps to employ previously unemployed or underemployed U.S. citizens in the construction and maintenance of projects in connection with:
- Reforestation of lands
- Prevention of forest fires, floods, and erosion
- Plant and pest disease control
- Construction, maintenance, and repair of paths, trails, and fire-lanes in lands within the Secretary of Interior’s jurisdiction and the National Forest System
- Other work on Federal or State land in connection with enumerated projects that the President determines desirable
The original Civilian Conservation Corps, which operated from 1933 to 1942, was responsible for planting nearly 3 billion trees, constructing over 800 parks, and building countless miles of public roadways in remote areas. The Corps boosted the economy, provided work for 3 million unemployed Americans, and increased Americans' awareness of our nation’s environmental treasures.
Climate Crisis Action Plan:
The Climate Crisis Action Plan calls on Congress to:
- Grow our economy and put Americans back to work in clean energy jobs
- Protect the health of all families
- Make sure our communities and farmers can withstand the impacts of climate change
- Protect America’s land and waters for the next generation
According to an independent analysis, the Climate Crisis Action Plan would save more than 60,000 American lives every year by 2050 thanks to reduced air pollution, as well as nearly $8 trillion saved through 2050 thanks to health and climate benefits.
The Climate Crisis Action Plan, released as a majority staff report, has received the early support of more than 90 outside organizations, including leaders in environmental justice, agriculture, buildings, electricity, public health, resilience, and transportation. Their support statements are available here.
Bill text for the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps can be found here
Background on the Select Committee’s report can be found here