Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West: October 19th Presidential Memorandum

Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C.

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The Trump Administration issued a document on October 19th titled:

Presidential Memorandum on Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West (“Memorandum”)

The Memorandum was issued to the:

  • Secretary of the Interior
  • Secretary of Commerce
  • Secretary of Energy
  • Secretary of the Army
  • Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality

Goals of the Memorandum are stated to include:

  • Reducing regulatory burdens that harm reliable water access in the West
  • Increasing water reliability for families, farmers, and cities across the West
  • Ensure a timely review process without compromising environmental protections under the Endangered Species Act

Each of the these goals identify a number of actions that are required to be taken by a date certain. For example, the Secretary of Interior and Secretary of Commerce are required to identify, within 30 days of the date of the Memorandum, major water infrastructure projects in California for which they have joint responsibility and coordinate Endangered Species Act and National Environmental Policy Act compliance responsibilities.

Another example is a requirement that the Secretary of Interior and Secretary of Commerce facilitate greater use of forecast-based management provided by the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017 by convening water experts and resource managers to develop an action plan to improve information/modeling capabilities related to water availability and water infrastructure projects.

A copy of the Memorandum can be found here.

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Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C.
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