Chesapeake Bay Agreement 2014

The first agreement in 1983 was a simple unilateral promise signed by the governors of Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, the mayor of the District of Columbia, the chairman of the Chesapeake Bay Commission and the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The 2014 agreement provides for 2025 as the deadline for achieving the targets. A mid-term assessment in 2017 has made significant progress in reducing pollution, largely due to dependence on sewage treatment plants. But the evaluation showed that the polluted process of suburbs and urban areas increased and that Pennsylvania was also lagging behind other states in general. A series of four agreements from 1983 led to the clean-up of the Chesapeake Bay. From the outset, the agreements emphasized the importance of sharing responsibilities between the federal government, the Bay Basin states and the District of Columbia. No other approach would work, as the bay basin spans six states. The new Chesapeake Watershed Agreement 2014 contains a number of new objectives that will restore and protect the bay, its tributaries and land around the watershed. Learn more about the Bay Agreement under www.chesapeakebay.net/watershedagreement The agreement cited adaptive management as a basic principle. Adaptive management is a process that encourages decisions in the face of uncertainty, reduces uncertainty over time and responds to change. The Chesapeake Bay program applies this process through the Strategic Review System, documented on ChesapeakeDecisions. It is clear that the Bay Agreements are an ongoing effort to translate ambitious goals into real results.

Since the creation of the Chesapeake Bay program in 1983, its partners have used written agreements to lead the restoration of the country`s largest estuary and watershed. Setting goals and monitoring progress makes partners accountable for their work, while developing new agreements over time ensures that our goals coincide with the best scientists available to achieve successful recovery. In 2009, it became clear that we need a new agreement that speeds up the restoration process and adapts federal guidelines to national and local objectives to create a healthy bay. Bay partners have collected input from residents, stakeholders, academic institutions, local governments, etc. to develop an inclusive and focused document that would address current and emerging environmental concerns. In particular, the 2014 Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement set critical targets on five themes: But the first agreements were voluntary in nature, with little accountability to be made. These agreements have made progress, but states and districts fell well short of their own pollution reduction targets. Until 2009, all participants understood that a new type of approach was needed, one that kept the participants to their promises.

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