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Planning for Our Future:

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Presentation on theme: "Planning for Our Future:"— Presentation transcript:

1 Planning for Our Future:
A new Chesapeake Watershed Agreement Russ Baxter Deputy Secretary of Natural Resources for the Chesapeake Bay

2 Visit:
Public comment invited through March 17, 2014 Visit:

3 NY DC VA MD PA DE WV Bay Commission Federal govt Bay Program is truly a partnership that works collaboratively to restore and protect the Bay watershed. All of these state, federal and non-government organizations…and many more, work together to offer the best possible science that can help managers and leaders make informed decisions that will benefit our watershed’s resources and citizens. The CBP partnership also sets the top-level direction for priorities in Bay restoration. Through thoughtful planning and goal-setting =– such as we’re doing now with this Agreement – all partners work together to guide the work. A vast partnership of all the major players in the Chesapeake region, working collaboratively on science, policy and restoration efforts

4 Chesapeake Bay Program History
1980 Chesapeake Bay Commission 1983 Chesapeake Bay Agreement 1987 Chesapeake Bay Agreement 1992 Amended to develop Tributary strategies 2000 Chesapeake Bay 2000 2005 New Tributary strategies were released 2009 Executive Order Signed 2010 Chesapeake Bay TMDL 2011 “Alignment” process begun Common Goals and Shared Effort to Restore the Bay 6 Bay States and DC EPA and other federal agencies Local Governments Non-profit Organizations Academic Institutions 4 4

5 Why is a new Agreement important?
We (the partners) need to: Revisit and renew our commitments to work together & set new goals (nearly 14 years since the last agreement was signed) Provide opportunity for full participation by the headwater states Update science, governance and management techniques – ie: climate change, adaptive management Improve our coordination, integration & collaboration among the partners Align the EO and TMDL with the Partnership agreement and governance structures to ensure proper coordination Why do we need a new Agreement? 1) Re-commmittment Everyone’s participation is critical to achieving the shared goal of clean waters in the Bay and throughout the watershed. And in every relationship – esp. one as complex as CBP – there’s value in taking time to re-examine how things are working and where you need to improve in order to move forward. C2K commitments are largely outdated – need a new guiding plan w/ solid goals Chesapeake 2025 is our roadmap for the near future Opportunity to change our way of doing business 2) Current agreement based on current science CBP is a unique, regional partnership focusing on the continuous pursuit of the best scientific understanding of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. Just as our science and circumstances (and ecosystems) change – CBP needs to adapt its goals and outcomes to better reflect what we know today. 3) Improved inclusion/collaboration Chesapeake 2025 brings together federal agencies, Bay states & DC to work in a more integrated and collaborative fashion for benefit of Bay restoration Better integration of EO, TMDL & CBP goals Makes our efforts more transparent and accountable A balanced, collaborative effort to get us to a balanced ecosystem that can support both natural resources and people’s quality of life

6 What will it do? Clarity Clearer goals and more well defined outcomes than previous agreements Flexibility Allow us to adapt our thinking and management decisions to adjust to changing conditions and circumstances Transparency & Accountability Partners set priorities & commit resources through management strategies Simplification Goals are more clear (simpler) than those of C2K – therefore more understandable, measureable Focus will be on higher priority goals and outcomes for the partnership. Individual partners may have additional priorities, but this Agreement is focused on the goals and outcomes where having a partnership is helpful or necessary to the achievement of those outcomes. Flexibility Resource managers in each jurisdiction will be able to adapt their management strategies to better support their goals This is not an “opt out” – it’s a sensible solution to the diverse ways that jurisdictions manage the equally diverse resources they have Accountability Regular reviews of partner management strategies and clear, simple goals on high priority issues will make it easier to track how efforts are going

7 ALL goals, outcomes and strategies derived from the CBP Goal Teams –
How will it work? ALL goals, outcomes and strategies derived from the CBP Goal Teams – issue experts & stakeholders from across the jurisdictions / watershed. GOAL CBP’s Executive Council (EC) agrees on the Watershed Agreement GOALS & initial OUTCOMES OUTCOME OUTCOME CBP’s Principals’ Staff Committee (PSC) tracks OUTCOMES , ensuring they are measureable & achievable; adapting as needed OUTCOME Mgmt Strategy New Watershed Agreement will include the overarching GOALS & initial OUTCOMES Management strategies will be called for in the new watershed agreement – but not be drafted or finalized There will be plenty of time for input on the development of these strategies Mgmt Strategy CBP’s Management Board (MB) to manage and track the STRATEGIES, adapting them as necessary over time for success Mgmt Strategy Management strategies will guide the work and will also allow some flexibility to implement the practices that make the most sense for each portion of the watershed.

8 What are the Goals? Sustainable Fisheries Vital Habitats
Blue Crab Abundance; Blue Crab Management; Oysters, Forage fish; Fish Habitat (spawning, nursery and forage) Vital Habitats Wetlands – re-establish tidal and nontidal wetlands, enhance function of degraded wetlands Black duck habitat; Stream health; Brook trout; Fish passage SAV Forest buffers; Urban tree canopy At its most basic level, the Watershed Agreement focuses on 5 goals – shown here. Within each goal are more specific goals for things such as: Blue crabs, oysters, forage fish (like menhaden) and preserving fish habitat Wetlands, underwater grasses, fish passage and forest buffers Water quality Land conservation

9 What are the Goals? Water Quality
Nutrient and Sediment reduction goals and schedules called for in the Chesapeake Bay TMDL Healthy Watersheds Protect currently-healthy waters and small watersheds Maintain currently identified “healthy waters” Land Conservation Protect additional 2 million acres Develop methodology for measuring extent and rate of change in impervious lands Evaluate “incentive, resources and tools” to assist local governments in reducing rate of ag and forest land consumption

10 What are the Goals? Public Access Add 300 public-access sites Environmental Literacy Increase participation of students in watershed educational experiences; highlight successful environmental educations; develop baseline metrics for environmental literacy

11 Management Strategies
Within one year of the Agreement, Goal Implementation Teams will develop management strategies for the outcomes supporting the Agreement goals. These strategies will outline the means for accomplishing the outcome, monitoring, assessing and reporting progress and coordinating actions among partners and stakeholders, as necessary.

12 Watershed Agreement in Summary
Image courtesy Choose Clean Water Coalition Looks ahead to address emerging challenges Sets clearer goals for partners to strive toward; and specific outcomes to help us measure our progress Incorporates latest science and ecosystem management techniques Better integrates and coordinates between CBP and EO goals for the Bay Creates greater flexibility and improved accountability for partners’ efforts This new Watershed Agreement is a big opportunity for each partner since it will set the stage for the future generation of restoration. It is the foundation for the next phase of the Bay effort for us all.

13 Finally, I want to be sure to direct you to the Watershed Agreement webpage, shown here – chesapeake bay dot net slash watershed agreement. On this page you can: Offer your official comments in writing, right on the page Find the address to which you can submit a more formal letter See a summary comments we received during the first public comment period last summer, and find out how we resolved them. Thank you and now we welcome your input on the new Watershed Agreement! To offer your comments, visit:

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