Dems seek to nourish native plants with new Interior center

By Michael Doyle | 06/06/2024 04:34 PM EDT

Legislation in both chambers would establish a $500 million National Interagency Seed and Restoration Center.

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii)

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) introduced legislation to create an Interior Department office focused on native plants. Francis Chung/POLITICO

Democratic lawmakers on Wednesday introduced legislation in both the House and Senate to establish an agency within the Interior Department focused on conservation and restoration of native plant communities.

The ambitious proposal would authorize $100 million annually from fiscal 2025 through 2029 for the creation of the National Interagency Seed and Restoration Center.

“In Hawaii, native plants are not just significant to our state’s history and culture, they also provide restorative benefits to our local ecosystems and habitats,” Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) said in a statement.


Hirono’s bill, S. 4462, is being paired in the House with H.R. 8640, which was introduced by Rep. Michael Quigley (D-Ill.).