Environmental Policy News

Trump Issues Executive Order on National Ocean Policy

On June 19, 2018, President Trump signed an Executive Order Regarding Ocean Policy to Advance the Economic, Security, and Environmental Interests of the United States.

The Executive Order is intended to advance the economic, security, and environmental interests of the United States through improved public access to marine data and information, efficient Federal agency coordination on ocean related matters, and engagement with marine industries, the science and technology community, and other ocean stakeholders, including Regional Ocean Partnerships.

According to the new Order,

It shall be the policy of the United States to:
(a) coordinate the activities of executive departments and agencies (agencies) regarding ocean-related matters to ensure effective management of ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes waters and to provide economic, security, and environmental benefits for present and future generations of Americans;
(b) continue to promote the lawful use of the ocean by agencies, including United States Armed Forces;
(c) exercise rights and jurisdiction and perform duties in accordance with applicable domestic law and — if consistent with applicable domestic law — international law, including customary international law;
(d) facilitate the economic growth of coastal communities and promote ocean industries, which employ millions of Americans, advance ocean science and technology, feed the American people, transport American goods, expand recreational opportunities, and enhance America’s energy security;
(e) ensure that Federal regulations and management decisions do not prevent productive and sustainable use of ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes waters;
(f) modernize the acquisition, distribution, and use of the best available ocean-related science and knowledge, in partnership with marine industries; the ocean science and technology community; State, tribal, and local governments; and other ocean stakeholders, to inform decisions and enhance entrepreneurial opportunity; and
(g) facilitate, as appropriate, coordination, consultation, and collaboration regarding ocean-related matters, consistent with applicable law, among Federal, State, tribal, and local governments, marine industries, the ocean science and technology community, other ocean stakeholders, and foreign governments and international organizations.

President Trump’s Executive Order revokes and replaces Executive Order 13547, issued by former President Obama, a.k.a. “The National Ocean Policy,” which focused on marine conservation and established the National Ocean Council, consisting of 27 Federal agencies, departments, and offices. The council released the National Ocean Policy Implementation Plan in 2013 and helped create ocean.data.gov, which provides data in support of ocean planning efforts.

Read the full Executive Order on the White House website.


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