December 9, 2020

Young and Braun Join Bipartisan Climate Legislation to Support Global Trillion Trees Initiative

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) joined Senators Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), and Angus King (I-Maine) to introduce legislation to support U.S. leadership in reducing carbon in the atmosphere by restoring and conserving forests, grasslands, wetlands, and coastal habitats.


“I have long held the position that we can protect our environment without harming our economy, and this legislation is one example of the type of action we can take to reduce emissions and protect our natural resources while creating new economic opportunities,” said Senator Young.


“As a lifelong conservationist, I believe that Trillion Trees is a common sense proposal to help improve our land, water, soil, and air, without imposing onerous Washington regulations,” said Senator Braun. “I am proud to come together with my colleagues on this bipartisan solution to help advance a key objective that President Trump called for in his State of the Union Address.”


In advance of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration from 2021 to 2030, the World Economic Forum launched the global One Trillion Trees initiative, The Trillion Trees and Natural Carbon Storage Act would allow the United States to take a leadership role in supporting this effort to store carbon, promote biodiversity, and end deforestation at home and abroad.


The Trillion Trees and Natural Carbon Storage Act

  • Creates the International Forest Foundation, a nonprofit organization, to encourage and accept donations in support of international reforestation, restoration, and deforestation prevention efforts. 
  • Authorizes $10 million for USDA Forest Nursery Revival programs to ensure that the supply of seeds and saplings allows for increased domestic planting.
  • Engages America’s allies in conservation by authorizing the Secretary of State and USAID to increase their forest management cooperation efforts with other nations in order to better promote reforestation and sustainable land use management abroad.
  • Amends existing international conservation programs to explicitly include carbon sequestration and forest management among the list of approved technical assistance categories.
  • Makes it easier for private landowners to participate in carbon credit markets by authorizing USDA to provide loan guarantees for related projects.
  • Requires that USDA establish objectives for increasing the net carbon stock of American forests, grasslands, wetlands, and coastal blue carbon habitats.


This legislation is supported by The Nature Conservancy, National Wildlife Federation, Environmental Defense Fund, World Wildlife Fund, National Audubon Society, Bipartisan Policy Center, American Forest Foundation, American Conservation Coalition, National Association of State Foresters, Conservation International, and Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions.


The bill text is available here, and a summary of the bill is here.