Scientists with a state commission in North Carolina will not be permitted to issue formal predictions of sea level rise based on climate change – at least for the next four years.
After enduring national ridicule for proposing a bill to outlaw any coastal sea level projections based on climate change data, the state’s Republican-controlled Legislature came up with a compromise Tuesday. Lawmakers effectively put the sea level debate on hold by asking for more studies – but none that involve climate change.
The compromise legislation forbids the state’s Coastal Resources Commission from making any policies based on sea level change until at least July 2016.
The state House voted 68 to 46 on Tuesday for the measure, which was approved 40 to 1 by the state Senate on Monday. A spokesman for Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue, whose vetoes of three unrelated but equally controversial bills were overridden by the Legislature this week, said she had not decided whether to veto the sea level bill.