Executive Order: Preparing the United States for the Impacts of Climate Change

Earlier this month, President Obama issued an executive order to prepare the Nation for climate disruption. This statement, which can be read in full here, provides steps towards implementing the President’s Climate Action Plan.

The executive order begins by outlining a general policy overview, stating that climate change impacts “are already affecting communities, natural resources, ecosystems, economies, and public health across the Nation.” President Obama calls for a coordinated plan among all stakeholders to improve climate preparedness and resilience.

Section 2 focuses on reforming Federal programs to encourage action on climate change protection. This includes removing barriers to projects that improve climate change resilience and providing opportunities for climate protection investments.

The next section calls for agencies to assess changes to land- and water- related programs “to make the Nation’s watersheds, natural resources, and ecosystems, and the communities and economies that depend on them, more resilient in the face of a changing climate.” Much of this work will be completed by the teams outlined in Section 4, titled “Providing Information, Data, and Tools for Climate Change Preparedness and Resilience.”

Finally, the order calls for agencies to regularly report their plans and actions, which will be monitored by the Council on Climate Preparedness and Resilience.  In addition, a State, Local and Tribal Leaders Task Force will provide recommendations and input to the President and Council.

To learn more, watch this PBS and Bloomberg News commentary, read this White House fact sheet, or read the entire executive order here.

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