A diverse group of 30 members of the National Waterways Alliance – representing all segments of the water resources community nationwide – met with the Council on Environmental Quality to discuss the proposed revisions to the Principles and Standards governing the planning and development of water resources projects. Recognizing that reliable, well maintained water resources infrastructure is critical to our nation’s economic vitality and environmental well-being, the Alliance sought to offer constructive suggestions to the proposal to ensure a viable, long-term planning mechanism.
Highlights of the session included a presentation by Dr. Sam Hunter, Chairman of the Mississippi Valley Flood Control Association, reflecting on the significance of the Mississippi River watershed to our nation, stressed the critical importance of effective flood control efforts to protect our nation’s most valuable natural resource. This sentiment was echoed by Jack Peterson (Harris County Flood Control District) and Karin Jacoby (Missouri-Arkansas River Basin Association), tying effective flood control measures to the safety and well-being of flood prone communities. Other attendees included Jeff Wood from Ingram Barge, who pointed out the economic and environmental benefits of moving cargo along our inland, coastal and Great Lakes waterways; Susan Monteverde (American Association of Port Authorities), on the need to ensure the cooperation between the Federal government and local sponsors in the planning of these critical projects; and Harry Proudy (American Shore and Beach Preservation Association), on the utilization of effective scientific technology through the planning process.
Amy Larson, President of the National Waterways Conference, praised the Council for its willingness to work together to address the concerns raised in response to the proposed Principles. In further thanking the Council for its invitation to provide assistance in resolving the concerns, Larson noted that the Alliance looks forward to a continuing dialogue with the Council as it works to establish a national policy and framework for an effective, timely and balanced planning process.