Modernizing America's Water Resource Management and Water Infrastructure, 65647-65650 [2020-23116]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 201 / Friday, October 16, 2020 / Presidential Documents 65647 Presidential Documents Executive Order 13956 of October 13, 2020 Modernizing America’s Water Resource Management and Water Infrastructure By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows: Section 1. Purpose. Abundant, safe, and reliable supplies of water are critical to quality of life for all Americans, fueling our economy, providing food for our citizens and the world, generating energy, protecting public health, supporting rich and diverse wildlife and plant species, and affording recreational opportunities. While America is blessed with abundant natural resources, those resources must be effectively managed, and our water infrastructure must be modernized to meet the needs of current and future generations. Executive departments and agencies (agencies) that engage in water-related matters, including water storage and supply, water quality and restoration activities, water infrastructure, transportation on our rivers and inland waterways, and water forecasting, must work together where they have joint or overlapping responsibilities. This order will ensure that agencies do that more efficiently and effectively to improve our country’s water resource management, modernize our water infrastructure, and prioritize the availability of clean, safe, and reliable water supplies. Sec. 2. Policy. It is the policy of the United States to: (a) Improve coordination among agencies on water resource management and water infrastructure issues; (b) Reduce unnecessary duplication across the Federal Government by coordinating and consolidating existing water-related task forces, working groups, and other formal cross-agency initiatives, as appropriate; (c) Efficiently and effectively manage America’s water resources and promote resilience of America’s water-related infrastructure; jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with EXECORD1 (d) Promote integrated planning among agencies for Federal investments in water-related infrastructure; and (e) Support workforce development and efforts to recruit, train, and retain professionals to operate and maintain America’s essential drinking water, wastewater, flood control, hydropower, and delivery and storage facilities. Sec. 3. Interagency Water Subcabinet. To promote efficient and effective coordination across agencies engaged in water-related matters, and to prioritize actions to modernize and safeguard our water resources and infrastructure, an interagency Water Policy Committee (to be known as the Water Subcabinet) is hereby established. The Water Subcabinet shall be co-chaired by the Secretary of the Interior and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (Co-Chairs), and shall include the Secretary of Agriculture, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of the Army, and the heads of such other agencies as the Co-Chairs deem appropriate. The Department of the Interior or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shall, to the extent permitted by law and subject to the availability of appropriations, provide administrative support as needed for the Water Subcabinet to implement this order. Sec. 4. Reducing Inefficiencies and Duplication. Currently, hundreds of Federal water-related task forces, working groups, and other formal cross-agency VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:05 Oct 15, 2020 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\16OCE1.SGM 16OCE1 65648 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 201 / Friday, October 16, 2020 / Presidential Documents initiatives (Federal interagency working groups) exist to address water resource management. Within 90 days of the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall, to the extent practicable, identify all such Federal interagency working groups and provide recommendations to the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) on coordinating and consolidating these Federal interagency working groups, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law. Sec. 5. Improving Water Resource Management. Federal agencies engage in a wide range of activities relating to water resource management. Within 120 days of the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall submit to the Chairman of CEQ, the Director of OMB, and the Director of OSTP a report that recommends actions to address the issues described below, and for each recommendation identifies a lead agency, other relevant agencies, and agency milestones for fiscal years 2021 through 2025: (a) Actions to increase water storage, water supply reliability, and drought resiliency, including through: (i) developing additional storage capacity, including an examination of operational changes and opportunities to update dam water control manuals for existing facilities during routine operations, maintenance, and safety assessments; (ii) coordinating agency reviews when there are multi-agency permitting and other regulatory requirements; (iii) increasing engagement with State, local, and tribal partners regarding the ongoing drought along the Colorado River and regarding irrigated agriculture in the Colorado Basin; (iv) implementing the ‘‘Priority Actions Supporting Long-Term Drought Resilience’’ document issued on July 31, 2019, by the National Drought Resilience Partnership; and (v) improving coordination among State, local, tribal, and territorial governments and rural communities, including farmers, ranchers, and landowners, to develop voluntary, market-based water and land management practices and programs that improve conservation efforts, economic viability, and water supply, sustainability, and security; (b) Actions to improve water quality, source water protection, and nutrient management; to promote restoration activities; and to examine water quality challenges facing our Nation’s minority and low-income communities, including through: (i) implementing the ‘‘Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) Action Plan III’’ issued on October 22, 2019, by the EPA for the GLRI Interagency Task Force and Regional Working Group, established pursuant to the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act (Public Law 114– 322); jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with EXECORD1 (ii) enhancing coordination among the Mississippi River/Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force partners to support State implementation of nutrient reduction strategies; (iii) increasing coordination between agencies and members of the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force, established pursuant to the Water Resources Development Act of 1996 (Public Law 104–303), and implementing and completing the activities included in the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, established pursuant to the Water Resources Development Act of 2000 (Public Law 106–541); and (iv) continuing implementation of the EPA’s memorandum entitled ‘‘Updating the Environmental Protection Agency’s Water Quality Trading Policy to Promote Market-Based Mechanisms for Improving Water Quality’’ issued on February 6, 2019; VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:05 Oct 15, 2020 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\16OCE1.SGM 16OCE1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 201 / Friday, October 16, 2020 / Presidential Documents 65649 (c) Actions to improve water systems, including for drinking water, desalination, water reuse, wastewater, and flood control, including through: (i) finalizing and implementing, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, the proposed rule entitled ‘‘National Primary Drinking Water Regulations: Proposed Lead and Copper Rule Revisions,’’ 84 Fed. Reg. 61684 (Nov. 13, 2019); (ii) implementing the ‘‘National Water Reuse Action Plan’’ issued on February 27, 2020, by the EPA; (iii) coordinating with the Federal Interagency Floodplain Management Task Force, established pursuant to the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968 (Public Law 90–448), on Federal flood risk management policies and programs to better support community needs; and (iv) continuing coordination among agencies concerning the Department of Energy’s Water Security Grand Challenge to advance transformational technology and innovation to provide safe, secure, and affordable water; and (d) Actions to improve water data management, research, modeling, and forecasting, including through: (i) aligning efforts and developing research plans among the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Agriculture, the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Secretary of the Army, through the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works), to ensure that America remains a global leader for water-related science and technology capabilities; (ii) implementing common methods of water forecasting, including the use of snow monitoring tools, on a national and basin scale, supported by weather forecasting on all scales; (iii) developing state-of-the-art geospatial data tools, including maps, through Federal, State, tribal, and territorial partnerships to depict the scope of waters regulated under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972 (Public Law 92–500); and jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with EXECORD1 (iv) implementing actions identified in the ‘‘Federal Action Plan for Improving Forecasts of Water Availability’’ issued on October 18, 2019, by the Department of the Interior and the Department of Commerce pursuant to section 3 of the Presidential Memorandum of October 19, 2018 (Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West). Sec. 6. Report. Within 1 year of submitting the report required by section 5 of this order, and annually thereafter, the Water Subcabinet shall update the Chairman of CEQ, the Director of OMB, and the Director of OSTP on the status of the actions identified in the report. Sec. 7. Integrated Infrastructure Planning. Agencies oversee a number of programs to enhance coordination of cross-agency water infrastructure planning and to protect taxpayer investments. Within 150 days of the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall identify and recommend actions and priorities to the Director of OMB, the Chairman of CEQ, and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy to support integrated planning and coordination among agencies to maintain and modernize our Nation’s water infrastructure, including for drinking water, desalination, water reuse, wastewater, irrigation, flood control, transportation on our rivers and inland waterways, and water storage and conveyance. The recommendations shall consider water infrastructure programs that are funded by the Department of Defense through the Army Corps of Engineers, and by the Department of the Interior, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Energy, the EPA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Economic Development Administration, and other agencies, as appropriate. Such programs include the EPA’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program, established pursuant to the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 (Public Law 113–121) and amended by the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 (Public Law 115–270), which modernizes the aging VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:05 Oct 15, 2020 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\16OCE1.SGM 16OCE1 65650 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 201 / Friday, October 16, 2020 / Presidential Documents water infrastructure of the United States, improves public health protections, and creates jobs; the Department of Agriculture’s rural development programs, which make and support investments in water infrastructure; and the Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service programs, which promote source water protection, improve water quality, and assist with developing new water infrastructure projects. Sec. 8. Water Sector Workforce. Trained water-sector professionals are vital to protecting public health and the environment through strategic planning, operation and maintenance of treatment facilities, and implementation of water management programs. Within 150 days of the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet, in consultation with the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Secretary of Education, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the heads of other agencies, as appropriate, shall identify actions and develop recommendations to improve interagency coordination and provide assistance and technical support to State, local, tribal, and territorial governments in order to enhance the recruitment, training, and retention of water professionals within drinking water, desalination, water reuse, wastewater, flood control, hydropower, and delivery and storage sectors. Such recommendations shall be submitted to the Chairman of CEQ, the Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, and the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers. Sec. 9. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: (i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or (ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. (b) This order shall be implemented in a manner consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. THE WHITE HOUSE, October 13, 2020. [FR Doc. 2020–23116 Filed 10–15–20; 8:45 am] Billing code 3295–F1–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:05 Oct 15, 2020 Jkt 253001 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\16OCE1.SGM 16OCE1 Trump.EPS</GPH> jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with EXECORD1 (c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 201 (Friday, October 16, 2020)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 65647-65650]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-23116]




                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 201 / Friday, October 16, 2020 / 
Presidential Documents

[[Page 65647]]


                Executive Order 13956 of October 13, 2020

                
Modernizing America's Water Resource Management 
                and Water Infrastructure

                By the authority vested in me as President by the 
                Constitution and the laws of the United States of 
                America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

                Section 1. Purpose. Abundant, safe, and reliable 
                supplies of water are critical to quality of life for 
                all Americans, fueling our economy, providing food for 
                our citizens and the world, generating energy, 
                protecting public health, supporting rich and diverse 
                wildlife and plant species, and affording recreational 
                opportunities. While America is blessed with abundant 
                natural resources, those resources must be effectively 
                managed, and our water infrastructure must be 
                modernized to meet the needs of current and future 
                generations.

                Executive departments and agencies (agencies) that 
                engage in water-related matters, including water 
                storage and supply, water quality and restoration 
                activities, water infrastructure, transportation on our 
                rivers and inland waterways, and water forecasting, 
                must work together where they have joint or overlapping 
                responsibilities. This order will ensure that agencies 
                do that more efficiently and effectively to improve our 
                country's water resource management, modernize our 
                water infrastructure, and prioritize the availability 
                of clean, safe, and reliable water supplies.

                Sec. 2. Policy. It is the policy of the United States 
                to:

                    (a) Improve coordination among agencies on water 
                resource management and water infrastructure issues;
                    (b) Reduce unnecessary duplication across the 
                Federal Government by coordinating and consolidating 
                existing water-related task forces, working groups, and 
                other formal cross-agency initiatives, as appropriate;
                    (c) Efficiently and effectively manage America's 
                water resources and promote resilience of America's 
                water-related infrastructure;
                    (d) Promote integrated planning among agencies for 
                Federal investments in water-related infrastructure; 
                and
                    (e) Support workforce development and efforts to 
                recruit, train, and retain professionals to operate and 
                maintain America's essential drinking water, 
                wastewater, flood control, hydropower, and delivery and 
                storage facilities.

                Sec. 3. Interagency Water Subcabinet. To promote 
                efficient and effective coordination across agencies 
                engaged in water-related matters, and to prioritize 
                actions to modernize and safeguard our water resources 
                and infrastructure, an interagency Water Policy 
                Committee (to be known as the Water Subcabinet) is 
                hereby established. The Water Subcabinet shall be co-
                chaired by the Secretary of the Interior and the 
                Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency 
                (Co-Chairs), and shall include the Secretary of 
                Agriculture, the Secretary of Commerce, the Secretary 
                of Energy, the Secretary of the Army, and the heads of 
                such other agencies as the Co-Chairs deem appropriate. 
                The Department of the Interior or the Environmental 
                Protection Agency (EPA) shall, to the extent permitted 
                by law and subject to the availability of 
                appropriations, provide administrative support as 
                needed for the Water Subcabinet to implement this 
                order.

                Sec. 4. Reducing Inefficiencies and Duplication. 
                Currently, hundreds of Federal water-related task 
                forces, working groups, and other formal cross-agency

[[Page 65648]]

                initiatives (Federal interagency working groups) exist 
                to address water resource management. Within 90 days of 
                the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall, to 
                the extent practicable, identify all such Federal 
                interagency working groups and provide recommendations 
                to the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality 
                (CEQ), the Director of the Office of Management and 
                Budget (OMB), and the Director of the Office of Science 
                and Technology Policy (OSTP) on coordinating and 
                consolidating these Federal interagency working groups, 
                as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.

                Sec. 5. Improving Water Resource Management. Federal 
                agencies engage in a wide range of activities relating 
                to water resource management. Within 120 days of the 
                date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall submit 
                to the Chairman of CEQ, the Director of OMB, and the 
                Director of OSTP a report that recommends actions to 
                address the issues described below, and for each 
                recommendation identifies a lead agency, other relevant 
                agencies, and agency milestones for fiscal years 2021 
                through 2025:

                    (a) Actions to increase water storage, water supply 
                reliability, and drought resiliency, including through:

(i) developing additional storage capacity, including an examination of 
operational changes and opportunities to update dam water control manuals 
for existing facilities during routine operations, maintenance, and safety 
assessments;

(ii) coordinating agency reviews when there are multi-agency permitting and 
other regulatory requirements;

(iii) increasing engagement with State, local, and tribal partners 
regarding the ongoing drought along the Colorado River and regarding 
irrigated agriculture in the Colorado Basin;

(iv) implementing the ``Priority Actions Supporting Long-Term Drought 
Resilience'' document issued on July 31, 2019, by the National Drought 
Resilience Partnership; and

(v) improving coordination among State, local, tribal, and territorial 
governments and rural communities, including farmers, ranchers, and 
landowners, to develop voluntary, market-based water and land management 
practices and programs that improve conservation efforts, economic 
viability, and water supply, sustainability, and security;

                    (b) Actions to improve water quality, source water 
                protection, and nutrient management; to promote 
                restoration activities; and to examine water quality 
                challenges facing our Nation's minority and low-income 
                communities, including through:

(i) implementing the ``Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) Action 
Plan III'' issued on October 22, 2019, by the EPA for the GLRI Interagency 
Task Force and Regional Working Group, established pursuant to the Water 
Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act (Public Law 114-322);

(ii) enhancing coordination among the Mississippi River/Gulf of Mexico 
Watershed Nutrient Task Force partners to support State implementation of 
nutrient reduction strategies;

(iii) increasing coordination between agencies and members of the South 
Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force, established pursuant to the Water 
Resources Development Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-303), and implementing 
and completing the activities included in the Comprehensive Everglades 
Restoration Plan, established pursuant to the Water Resources Development 
Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-541); and

(iv) continuing implementation of the EPA's memorandum entitled ``Updating 
the Environmental Protection Agency's Water Quality Trading Policy to 
Promote Market-Based Mechanisms for Improving Water Quality'' issued on 
February 6, 2019;

[[Page 65649]]

                    (c) Actions to improve water systems, including for 
                drinking water, desalination, water reuse, wastewater, 
                and flood control, including through:

(i) finalizing and implementing, as appropriate and consistent with 
applicable law, the proposed rule entitled ``National Primary Drinking 
Water Regulations: Proposed Lead and Copper Rule Revisions,'' 84 Fed. Reg. 
61684 (Nov. 13, 2019);

(ii) implementing the ``National Water Reuse Action Plan'' issued on 
February 27, 2020, by the EPA;

(iii) coordinating with the Federal Interagency Floodplain Management Task 
Force, established pursuant to the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968 
(Public Law 90-448), on Federal flood risk management policies and programs 
to better support community needs; and

(iv) continuing coordination among agencies concerning the Department of 
Energy's Water Security Grand Challenge to advance transformational 
technology and innovation to provide safe, secure, and affordable water; 
and

                    (d) Actions to improve water data management, 
                research, modeling, and forecasting, including through:

(i) aligning efforts and developing research plans among the Secretary of 
the Interior, the Secretary of Agriculture, the Administrator of the 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Secretary of the 
Army, through the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works), to ensure 
that America remains a global leader for water-related science and 
technology capabilities;

(ii) implementing common methods of water forecasting, including the use of 
snow monitoring tools, on a national and basin scale, supported by weather 
forecasting on all scales;

(iii) developing state-of-the-art geospatial data tools, including maps, 
through Federal, State, tribal, and territorial partnerships to depict the 
scope of waters regulated under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act 
Amendments of 1972 (Public Law 92-500); and

(iv) implementing actions identified in the ``Federal Action Plan for 
Improving Forecasts of Water Availability'' issued on October 18, 2019, by 
the Department of the Interior and the Department of Commerce pursuant to 
section 3 of the Presidential Memorandum of October 19, 2018 (Promoting the 
Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West).

                Sec. 6. Report. Within 1 year of submitting the report 
                required by section 5 of this order, and annually 
                thereafter, the Water Subcabinet shall update the 
                Chairman of CEQ, the Director of OMB, and the Director 
                of OSTP on the status of the actions identified in the 
                report.

                Sec. 7. Integrated Infrastructure Planning. Agencies 
                oversee a number of programs to enhance coordination of 
                cross-agency water infrastructure planning and to 
                protect taxpayer investments. Within 150 days of the 
                date of this order, the Water Subcabinet shall identify 
                and recommend actions and priorities to the Director of 
                OMB, the Chairman of CEQ, and the Assistant to the 
                President for Economic Policy to support integrated 
                planning and coordination among agencies to maintain 
                and modernize our Nation's water infrastructure, 
                including for drinking water, desalination, water 
                reuse, wastewater, irrigation, flood control, 
                transportation on our rivers and inland waterways, and 
                water storage and conveyance. The recommendations shall 
                consider water infrastructure programs that are funded 
                by the Department of Defense through the Army Corps of 
                Engineers, and by the Department of the Interior, the 
                Department of Agriculture, the Department of Energy, 
                the EPA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the 
                Economic Development Administration, and other 
                agencies, as appropriate. Such programs include the 
                EPA's Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act 
                program, established pursuant to the Water Resources 
                Reform and Development Act of 2014 (Public Law 113-121) 
                and amended by the America's Water Infrastructure Act 
                of 2018 (Public Law 115-270), which modernizes the 
                aging

[[Page 65650]]

                water infrastructure of the United States, improves 
                public health protections, and creates jobs; the 
                Department of Agriculture's rural development programs, 
                which make and support investments in water 
                infrastructure; and the Department of Agriculture's 
                Natural Resources Conservation Service programs, which 
                promote source water protection, improve water quality, 
                and assist with developing new water infrastructure 
                projects.

                Sec. 8. Water Sector Workforce. Trained water-sector 
                professionals are vital to protecting public health and 
                the environment through strategic planning, operation 
                and maintenance of treatment facilities, and 
                implementation of water management programs. Within 150 
                days of the date of this order, the Water Subcabinet, 
                in consultation with the Secretary of Labor, the 
                Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Secretary 
                of Education, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and 
                the heads of other agencies, as appropriate, shall 
                identify actions and develop recommendations to improve 
                interagency coordination and provide assistance and 
                technical support to State, local, tribal, and 
                territorial governments in order to enhance the 
                recruitment, training, and retention of water 
                professionals within drinking water, desalination, 
                water reuse, wastewater, flood control, hydropower, and 
                delivery and storage sectors. Such recommendations 
                shall be submitted to the Chairman of CEQ, the 
                Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, the 
                Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, and the 
                Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

                Sec. 9. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order 
                shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or 
the head thereof; or

(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget 
relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

                    (b) This order shall be implemented in a manner 
                consistent with applicable law and subject to the 
                availability of appropriations.
                    (c) This order is not intended to, and does not, 
                create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, 
                enforceable at law or in equity by any party against 
                the United States, its departments, agencies, or 
                entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any 
                other person.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

                THE WHITE HOUSE,

                    October 13, 2020.

[FR Doc. 2020-23116
Filed 10-15-20; 8:45 am]
Billing code 3295-F1-P