ning documents, but it is extended herein to consider both the water and related land resources of the nation’s rivers and coastal areas (natural capital), and the attendant physical water management infrastructure. This report focuses on Corps-built physical infrastructure, although it is recognized that in many places, Corps projects are part of larger systems that include privately funded projects, as well as projects of other federal and state agencies. The term “planning” includes both analytical approaches and decision-making processes that govern investment and management strategies for the “portfolio” of natural and infrastructure assets. The portfolio planning metaphor suggests that the nation must strive to make the best use of existing Corps-built physical infrastructure, rivers, and coastlines (recognizing that the term “best” invites debate). The metaphor also applies to governance issues (in which the infrastructure in the portfolio is the Corps’ responsibility) and to financial issues, as the Corps may decide to invest or divest itself of some responsibilities and thus change the composition of portfolio assets. The Corps’ portfolio of assets and concerns, as described here, should be broadened such that it not only focuses on traditional benefits of flood control and navigation, but also encompasses natural resources conservation and environmental values. Chapter 4 further discusses the portfolio planning metaphor and its relevance to managing the Corps existing water resources infrastructure.
Chapter 3 reviews important historical events in the national approach to water management, focusing on roles of the Corps. This history is essential to understanding current national water management debates and to set the stage for this report’s findings and recommendations. Chapter 4 contains findings and recommendations for advancing portfolio planning. Chapter 5 includes recommendations on professional staff requirements and the planning and decision process. The report concludes with an epilogue in Chapter 6.