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Executive Order 13508, Chesapeake Bay Protection and Restoration, dated May 12, 2009 (74 FR 23099, May 15, 2009), requires a Federal Leadership Committee composed of seven federal agencies to prepare and publish a set of reports and a draft strategy for public review and comment within 180 days of the date of the order. The deadline for publication of the draft strategy was November 9, 2009 and accordingly is published in the
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Executive Order 13508 requires the Federal Leadership Committee for the Chesapeake Bay to prepare and publish a set of reports and a coordinated strategy for protecting and restoring the Chesapeake Bay. As required by E.O. 13508 Section 202, lead agencies prepared reports focusing on:
(a) Defining the next generation of tools and actions to restore water quality in the Chesapeake Bay and describing the changes to be made to regulations, programs, and policies to implement these actions;
(b) targeting resources to better protect the Chesapeake Bay and its tributary waters;
(c) strengthening storm water management practices at Federal facilities and on Federal lands within the Chesapeake Bay watershed and developing storm water best practices guidance;
(d) assessing the impacts of a changing climate on the Chesapeake Bay and developing a strategy for adapting natural resources programs and public infrastructure to the impacts of a changing climate on water quality and living resources of the Chesapeake Bay watershed;
(e) expanding public access to waters and open spaces of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries from Federal lands and conserving landscapes and ecosystems of the Chesapeake Bay watershed;
(f) strengthening scientific support for decision making to restore the Chesapeake Bay and watershed, including expanded environmental research; and
(g) developing focused and coordinated habitat and research activities that protect and restore living resources and water quality of the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed. E.O. 13508 Section 203 requires the Federal Leadership Committee for the Chesapeake Bay to prepare and publish a strategy for coordinated implementation of existing programs and projects to guide efforts to protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay. The strategy should to the extent permitted by law:
(a) Define environmental goals for the Chesapeake Bay and describe milestones for making progress toward attainment of these goals;
(b) Identify key measureable indicators of environmental condition and changes that are critical to effective Federal leadership;
(c) Describe the specific programs and strategies to be implemented, including the programs and strategies described in draft reports developed under Section 202 of the order;
(d) Identify the mechanisms that will assure that governmental and other activities, including data collection and distribution, are coordinated and effective, relying on existing mechanisms where appropriate; and
(e) Describe a process for the implementation of adaptive management principles, including a periodic evaluation of protection and restoration.
The agencies will review public comments on the draft strategy and agency reports. The comments will be taken into consideration as the Federal Leadership Committee for the Chesapeake Bay develops the final Section 203 strategy. However, the Committee does not anticipate revising the Section 202 reports based upon public comments received. The Committee plans to use comments received on the Section 202 reports to help inform the development of the Section 203 final strategy. As such, reviewers should focus their comments on the draft 203 strategy. A response to comments document will be released at the same time as the final E.O. 13508 Section 203 strategy with anticipated release by May 12, 2010. The federal agencies plan to hold a series of stakeholder meetings throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed to discuss the draft strategy. The details of these meetings will be announced at: