Thank you, Chairwoman Johnson.
I want to thank the Chairwoman of the Environment Subcommittee, Rep. Sherrill, for introducing this legislation and working with my staff and me to reach a bipartisan product.
In one of our first Committee hearings this Congress, we discussed this bill along with the idea of a federal climate service. I am pleased to see that my colleagues have heeded my caution against increasing federal bureaucracy by establishing new services and instead have focused on what we know works: enabling our established agencies to collect and acquire the data they need to be successful.
The PRECIP Act does that by authorizing NOAA to update their precipitation frequency estimates, begin a National Academies study on precipitation estimate research needs, and develop a plan to update probable maximum precipitation estimates. This information is absolutely critical to the farmers and ranchers of Oklahoma. Both historical data and future estimates of precipitation can inform the agriculture industry of growing season length, plant survival in specific areas, and irrigation needs for the season. These are all necessary to continue providing our country with food security.
Additionally, we cannot forget the value of partnerships between the public and private sectors when it comes to weather data collection. There is no need for NOAA to go out and collect what is already available, and I’m pleased to see this bill consider the value of private sector precipitation data. It seems fitting that public-private partnerships were a prominent feature of my bill, the Weather Act of 2017, and the legislation before us today now amends that law with a similar message.
I want to again thank Chairwoman Sherrill for going through the normal Committee process and working in a bipartisan manner to accomplish this bill. I am proud to cosponsor it with her and look forward to its passage. I yield back the balance of my time.