Box 6.1 American Heritage Rivers and the United Nations Plot

The fate of President Clint's American Heritage Initiative in some parts of the country illustrates the problems that cane generated by misinformation and extreme political positions. The Executive Order establishing the initiative on September 11, 1997 specified that the purpose was to "protect and restore rivers and their adjacent communities." The President ordered executive agencies to coordinate activities and resources to promote environmental restoration of waterways nominated for the program and economic restoration of the associated communities through partnerships with local authorities. In particular, the President ordered agencies to improve the delivery of federal services and programs and reduce procedural requirements and paperwork related to providing assistance. The policy directed that agencies make special efforts to coordinate federal planning and management efforts to protect the communities' goals, and to ensure that efforts for one community do not adversely affect neighboring communities. The focus of the program is to be a series of designated American Heritage Rivers that would be included in the system after nomination by local or state officials and citizens and demonstration of broad community support. The executive order specifically states as an objective the protection of private property rights.

analysis of the water quality and/or quantity is handled at some watershed scale. Many of these states have nonpoint pollution control as a primary objective. Actually, any state using a total mean daily loading (TMDL) approach for setting permit standards for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits is taking a watershed approach, because that approach focuses on the quality of the receiving waters and quality is a function of all the land uses and discharges into the river upstream. Watershed-based water quality management provides a mechanism for pollution permit trading which recognizes that it may be more cost-effective to control agricultural nonpoint pollution than to control urban runoff pollution. These state-based watershed water quality programs are supported by reallocating existing state program moneys, some of which comes



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