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Water: Climate Change and Water

Federal Collaborations on Climate Change and Water

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This page provides a variety of resources and background materials on EPA and other federal efforts related to climate change and water.

Climate Change and Water Working Group (CCAWWG)
This workgroup was formed in 2008 by the Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, National Oceanic and Atmopsheric Administration, and the U.S. Geological Survey, to work with the water management community to understand their needs, as well as to foster collaborative efforts across the federal and non-federal scientific community to address their needs in a way that capitalizes on interdisciplinary expertise, shares information, and avoids duplication. The Climate Change and Water Working Group is focused on helping the water management community adapt practices as climate changes. 

Cover of the National Action Plan document

National Action Plan: Priorities for Managing Freshwater Resources in a Changing Climate (2011) (PDF) (76 pp, 28 MB)
This National Action Plan synthesizes the latest science on climate risks to freshwater resources and establishes the following national goal: government agencies and citizens collaboratively manage freshwater resources in a changing climate in order to assure adequate water supplies and to protect water quality, human health, property, and aquatic ecosystems.

Cover of the Federal Actions for a Climate Resilient Nation document

Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Task Force – 2011 and 2010 Progress Reports
The Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Task Force, co-chaired by the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), includes representatives from more than 20 Federal agencies. On October 5, 2009, President Obama signed an Executive Order directing the Task Force to develop a report with recommendations for how the Federal Government can strengthen policies and programs to better prepare the Nation to adapt to the impacts of climate change.

Instructions for Implementing Climate Change Adaptation Planning In Accordance With Executive Order 13514, Federal Agency Climate Change Adaptation Planning (2011) (PDF) (5 pp, 51K)
Based on Task Force recommendations, the Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Agency Working Group (Working Group) developed recommended Implementing Instructions for adaptation planning requirements and provided those interagency recommendations to the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). The Working Group also provided a recommended Support Document that includes templates and information agencies will need to satisfy the requirements of the implementing instructions. CEQ has reviewed the Working Group recommendations and is providing these Implementing Instructions to ensure consistent and effective implementation of Executive Order 13514

Memorandum of Agreement Between the U.S. Department of Commerce National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (2011) (PDF) (12 pp, 2.4MB)
This agreement was created to assist regional government entities, States, Tribes, territories and local governments in becoming sustainable and resilient coastal and waterfront communities, protecting healthy coastal ecosystems, restoring degraded coastal ecosystems and adapting to climate change.

Memorandum of Agreement between the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (2010) (PDF) (23 pp, 4.5MB)
This agreement was created to formalize efforts to explore opportunities to incorporate sustainability and smart growth practices into communities' hazard mitigation planning and long term disaster recovery efforts, and to incorporate hazards resilience into smart growth assistance for communities.

WestFAST Water-Climate Change Program Inventory (2010) (PDF) (18 pp, 142K)
In support of the Climate Change Impacts elements of the 2008 “Next Steps” (Western Governors’ Association) report (actions 30-40), the Western States Federal Agency Support Team (WestFAST) conducted an inventory of the current water science and water management climate change activities of its member agencies. The purpose of this inventory is to share information on Federal climate change programs that are relevant to western water managers to facilitate closer coordination between Federal agencies and State water scientists and managers.

Executive Order 13514: Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance (2009)
The policy states that Federal agencies shall increase energy efficiency; measure, report, and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions from direct and indirect activities; conserve and protect water resources through efficiency, reuse, and stormwater management; eliminate waste, recycle, and prevent pollution; leverage agency acquisitions to foster markets for sustainable technologies and environmentally preferable materials, products and services; design, construct, maintain, and operate high performance sustainable buildings in sustainable locations; strengthen the vitality and livability of the communities in which Federal facilities are located; and inform Federal employees about and involve them in the achievement of these goals.

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