Federal Agencies Directed to Use Conflict Resolution on Water, Environmental Issues

The Office of Management and Budget and the President’s Council on Environmental Quality have issued a memo outlining the use of conflict resolution practices for water and other environmental is­sues. The memo directs federal agencies to use third-party facilita­tion to settle conflicts, including matters related to energy, transportation, water and land management.

“With the magnitude of environmental challenges facing the nation, coupled with the need for careful stewardship of tax dollars and budgets, all Federal departments and agencies should leverage environmental collaboration and conflict management approaches to minimize and resolve environmental conflicts,” the memo says.

The policy applies to all executive branch agencies as they carry out their responsibilities under enabling legislation, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and other laws aimed at managing and conserving the environment, natural resources and public lands.

It also supports an executive order from March directing agencies to improve the federal permitting process of infrastructure projects.

The complete memo can be found here.