Establishes the New York state ocean acidification task force to identify the causes and factors contributing to ocean acidification and to evaluate ways of addressing the problem by applying the best available science as to ocean acidification and its anticipated impacts.
NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A10264
TITLE OF BILL:
An act in relation to creating the New York state ocean acidification
task force; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expira-
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To facilitate research, public education, and information-sharing
regarding ocean acidification and its impacts on the State.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
This bill would create a fourteen-member Ocean Acidification Task Force
within the Department of Environmental Conservation to identify the
causes and factors contributing to ocean acidification and evaluating
ways of addressing the problem by applying the best available science.
In addition to the Department of Environmental Conservation, the Depart-
ment of State, and the Office of General Services, the Task Force would
include at large members who would have expertise in one or more of the
following areas: climatology; hydrology; economics; marine fisheries;
aquaculture; oceanography; or ecology.
Atmospheric carbon dioxide forms carbonic acid when dissolved in water.
As a result, the increased levels of carbon dioxide resulting from
climate change have contributed to oceans becoming increasingly acidic.
Ocean acidification can be further exacerbated by runoff and nutrient
influx from land. According to information provided by the Maine Ocean
Acidification Commission, "Scientific data indicates that the rate of
acidification is at least 100 times faster at present than at any other
time in the last 200,000 years and may be unprecedented in earth's
history." In addition, it is thought that the Atlantic Ocean along the
Northeast shore will be especially vulnerable to ocean acidification
because carbon dioxide is increasingly soluble in cold water and the
Northeast will be subject to increasingly intense rain events leading to
more intensive runoff.
Although the science is still developing, it is believed that ocean
acidification will have an adverse impact on the marine fisheries indus-
try, especially shellfish. The Draft Ocean Action Plan 2015-2025
prepared by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
(DEC) and the Department of State indicates "In 2011, commercial fishing
industries landed more than 27 million pounds of finfish and shellfish
worth $37.6 million, generated $5 billion in sales in local communities,
contributed $1.8 billion to the gross state product, and supported
42,000 jobs. That same year, recreational anglers generated $369 million
in sales, contributed $212 million to gross state product, and supported
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
This is new legislation.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:
This act shall be take effect immediately and shall be deemed repealed
January 1, 2019.
STATE OF NEW YORK
May 18, 2016
Introduced by M. of A. ENGLEBRIGHT -- read once and referred to the
Committee on Environmental Conservation
AN ACT in relation to creating the New York state ocean acidification
task force; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expi-
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. New York state ocean acidification task force. 1. There is
2 hereby established, within the department of environmental conservation,
3 an ocean acidification task force ("task force") which shall consist of
4 14 members who shall be appointed as follows:
5 (a) the commissioner of environmental conservation or his or her
7 (b) the secretary of state or his or her designee;
8 (c) the commissioner of the office of general services or his or her
10 (d) two members appointed by the governor;
11 (e) two members to be appointed by the temporary president of the
13 (f) two members to be appointed by the speaker of the assembly;
14 (g) one member to be appointed by the minority leader of the senate;
15 (h) one member to be appointed by the minority leader of the assembly;
16 (i) one member to be appointed by the mayor of the city of New York;
17 (j) one member to be appointed by the county executive of the county
18 of Nassau; and
19 (k) one member to be appointed by the county executive of the county
20 of Suffolk.
21 2. The at large members should include individuals with expertise in
22 one or more of the following areas: climatology; hydrology; economics;
23 marine fisheries including commercial and/or recreational fishing; envi-
24 ronmental; aquaculture; oceanography or coastal ocean science; ocean
25 acidification; and ecology or environmental biology.
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 10264 2
1 3. Task force members shall receive no compensation for their services
2 but shall be reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses incurred in
3 the performance of their duties.
4 4. The chairperson of the task force shall be the commissioner of
5 environmental conservation or his or her designee. The task force shall
6 meet no less than four times and at other times at the call of the
8 5. Any vacancies on the task force shall be filled in the manner
9 provided for in the initial appointment.
10 6. The task force shall be authorized to hold public hearings and
11 meetings to enable it to accomplish its duties.
12 7. The task force may consult with any organization, educational
13 institution, other government entity or agency or person including, but
14 not limited to, the national ocean and atmospheric administration, in
15 the development of its report required by subdivision 10 of this
17 8. The department of environmental conservation shall provide the task
18 force with such facilities, assistance and data as will enable the task
19 force to carry out its powers and duties. Additionally, all other agen-
20 cies of the state or subdivisions thereof may, at the request of the
21 chairperson, provide the task force with such facilities, assistance,
22 and data as will enable the task force to carry out its powers and
24 9. The purpose of the New York state ocean acidification task force
25 shall be to identify the causes and factors contributing to ocean acidi-
26 fication and evaluating ways of addressing the problem by applying the
27 best available science as to ocean acidification and its anticipated
29 10. No later than December 31, 2018, the task force shall transmit to
30 the governor, the temporary president of the senate and the speaker of
31 the assembly a report containing the following:
32 (a) an assessment of the anticipated impacts related to ocean acidifi-
34 (b) recommendations related to mechanisms New York could establish to
35 provide stronger, more protective standards, and the implementation and
36 enforcement of such standards in the context of ocean acidification;
37 (c) recommendations regarding adaptive measures which may be taken to
38 respond to ocean acidification, including measures to:
39 (i) identify and monitor early effects of ocean acidification on
40 marine life, animals, plants and natural communities; and
41 (ii) integrate ocean acidification mitigation and adaptation strate-
42 gies into state environmental plans;
43 (d) recommendations on state and local regulatory and/or statutory
44 alterations to respond to the impacts of ocean acidification;
45 (e) review existing scientific literature and data on ocean acidifica-
46 tion and how it has directly or indirectly affected or may potentially
47 affect commercially harvested and grown species along the coast;
48 (f) identify and monitor the factors contributing to ocean acidifica-
49 tion; and
50 (g) recommendations to increase public awareness of ocean acidifica-
52 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately and shall expire and be
53 deemed repealed January 1, 2019.