EXECUTIVE ORDER: Responsibilities of Federal Agencies to Protect Migratory Birds
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary

Immediate Release                                           January 11,

                              EXECUTIVE ORDER

                               - - - - - - -

                        TO PROTECT MIGRATORY BIRDS

     By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the
laws of the United States of America, and in furtherance of the purposes of
the migratory bird conventions, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C.
703-711), the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Acts (16 U.S.C. 668-668d),
the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 661-666c), the Endangered
Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544), the National Environmental
Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4347), and other pertinent statutes, it
is hereby ordered as follows:

     Section 1.  Policy.  Migratory birds are of great ecological and
economic value to this country and to other countries.  They contribute to
biological diversity and bring tremendous enjoyment to millions of
Americans who study, watch, feed, or hunt these birds throughout the United
States and other countries.  The United States has recognized the critical
importance of this shared resource by ratifying international, bilateral
conventions for the conservation of migratory birds.  Such conventions
include the Convention for the Protection of Migratory Birds with Great
Britain on behalf of Canada 1916, the Convention for the Protection of
Migratory Birds and Game Mammals-Mexico 1936, the Convention for the
Protection of Birds and Their Environment- Japan 1972, and the Convention
for the Conservation of Migratory Birds and Their Environment-Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics 1978.

     These migratory bird conventions impose substantive obligations on the
United States for the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats,
and through the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (Act), the United States has
implemented these migratory bird conventions with respect to the United
States.  This Executive Order directs executive departments and agencies to
take certain actions to further implement the Act.

     Sec. 2.  Definitions.  For purposes of this order:

     (a) "Take" means take as defined in 50 C.F.R. 10.12, and includes both
"intentional" and "unintentional" take.

     (b) "Intentional take" means take that is the purpose of the activity
in question.

     (c) "Unintentional take" means take that results from, but is not the
purpose of, the activity in question.

     (d) "Migratory bird" means any bird listed in 50 C.F.R. 10.13.

     (e) "Migratory bird resources" means migratory birds and the habitats
upon which they depend.

     (f) "Migratory bird convention" means, collectively, the bilateral
conventions (with Great Britain/Canada, Mexico, Japan, and Russia) for the
conservation of migratory bird resources.

     (g) "Federal agency" means an executive department or agency, but does
not include independent establishments as defined by 5 U.S.C. 104.

     (h) "Action" means a program, activity, project, official policy (such
as a rule or regulation), or formal plan directly carried out by a Federal
agency.  Each Federal agency will further define what the term "action"
means with respect to its own authorities and what programs should be
included in the agency-specific Memoranda of Understanding required by this
order.  Actions delegated to or assumed by nonfederal entities, or carried
out by nonfederal entities with Federal assistance, are not subject to this
order.  Such actions, however, continue to be subject to the Migratory Bird
Treaty Act.

     (i) "Species of concern" refers to those species listed in the
periodic report "Migratory Nongame Birds of Management Concern in the
United States," priority migratory bird species as documented by
established plans (such as Bird Conservation Regions in the North American
Bird Conservation Initiative or Partners in Flight physiographic areas),
and those species listed in 50 C.F.R. 17.11.

     Sec. 3.  Federal Agency Responsibilities.  (a) Each Federal agency
taking actions that have, or are likely to have, a measurable negative
effect on migratory bird populations is directed to develop and implement,
within 2 years, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Fish and
Wildlife Service (Service) that shall promote the conservation of migratory
bird populations.

     (b) In coordination with affected Federal agencies, the Service shall
develop a schedule for completion of the MOUs within 180 days of the date
of this order.  The schedule shall give priority to completing the MOUs
with agencies having the most substantive impacts on migratory birds.

     (c) Each MOU shall establish protocols for implementation of the MOU
and for reporting accomplishments.  These protocols may be incorporated
into existing actions; however, the MOU shall recognize that the agency may
not be able to implement some elements of the MOU until such time as the
agency has successfully included them in each agency's formal planning
processes (such as revision of agency land management plans, land use
compatibility guidelines, integrated resource manage-ment plans, and
fishery management plans), including public participation and NEPA
analysis, as appropriate.  This order and the MOUs to be developed by the
agencies are intended to be implemented when new actions or renewal of
contracts, permits, delegations, or other third party agreements are
initiated as well as during the initiation of new, or revisions to, land
management plans.

     (d) Each MOU shall include an elevation process to resolve any dispute
between the signatory agencies regarding a particular practice or activity.

     (e) Pursuant to its MOU, each agency shall, to the extent permitted by
law and subject to the availability of appropria-tions and within
Administration budgetary limits, and in harmony with agency missions:

     (1) support the conservation intent of the migratory bird conventions
by integrating bird conservation principles, measures, and practices into
agency activities and by avoiding or minimizing, to the extent practicable,
adverse impacts on migratory bird resources when conducting agency actions;

     (2) restore and enhance the habitat of migratory birds, as

     (3) prevent or abate the pollution or detrimental alteration of the
environment for the benefit of migratory birds, as practicable;

     (4) design migratory bird habitat and population conservation
principles, measures, and practices, into agency plans and planning
processes (natural resource, land management, and environmental quality
planning, including, but not limited to, forest and rangeland planning,
coastal management planning, watershed planning, etc.) as practicable, and
coordinate with other agencies and nonfederal partners in planning efforts;

     (5) within established authorities and in conjunction with the
adoption, amendment, or revision of agency management plans and guidance,
ensure that agency plans and actions promote programs and recommendations
of comprehensive migratory bird planning efforts such as
Partners-in-Flight, U.S. National Shorebird Plan, North American Waterfowl
Management Plan, North American Colonial Waterbird Plan, and other planning
efforts, as well as guidance from other sources, including the Food and
Agricultural Organization's International Plan of Action for Reducing
Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries;

     (6) ensure that environmental analyses of Federal actions required by
the NEPA or other established environmental review processes evaluate the
effects of actions and agency plans on migratory birds, with emphasis on
species of concern;

     (7) provide notice to the Service in advance of conducting an action
that is intended to take migratory birds, or annually report to the Service
on the number of individuals of each species of migratory birds
intentionally taken during the conduct of any agency action, including but
not limited to banding or marking, scientific collecting, taxidermy, and
depredation control;

     (8) minimize the intentional take of species of concern by:  (i)
delineating standards and procedures for such take; and (ii) developing
procedures for the review and evaluation of take actions.  With respect to
intentional take, the MOU shall be consistent with the appropriate sections
of 50 C.F.R. parts 10, 21, and 22;

     (9) identify where unintentional take reasonably attributable to
agency actions is having, or is likely to have, a measurable negative
effect on migratory bird populations, focusing first on species of concern,
priority habitats, and key risk factors.  With respect to those actions so
identified, the agency shall develop and use principles, standards, and
practices that will lessen the amount of unintentional take, developing any
such conservation efforts in cooperation with the Service.  These
principles, standards, and practices shall be regularly evaluated and
revised to ensure that they are effective in lessening the detrimental
effect of agency actions on migratory bird populations.  The agency also
shall inventory and monitor bird habitat and populations within the
agency?s capabilities and authorities to the extent feasible to facilitate
decisions about the need for, and effectiveness of, conservation efforts;

     (10) within the scope of its statutorily-designated authorities,
control the import, export, and establishment in the wild of live exotic
animals and plants that may be harmful to migratory bird resources;

     (11) promote research and information exchange related to the
conservation of migratory bird resources, including coordinated
inventorying and monitoring and the collection and assessment of
information on environmental contaminants and other physical or biological
stressors having potential relevance to migratory bird conservation.  Where
such information is collected in the course of agency actions or supported
through Federal financial assistance, reasonable efforts shall be made to
share such information with the Service, the Biological Resources Division
of the U.S. Geological Survey, and other appropriate repositories of such
data (e.g, the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology);

     (12) provide training and information to appropriate employees on
methods and means of avoiding or minimizing the take of migratory birds and
conserving and restoring migratory bird habitat;

     (13) promote migratory bird conservation in international activities
and with other countries and international partners, in consultation with
the Department of State, as appropriate or relevant to the agency?s

     (14) recognize and promote economic and recreational values of birds,
as appropriate; and

     (15) develop partnerships with non-Federal entities to further bird

     (f) Notwithstanding the requirement to finalize an MOU within 2 years,
each agency is encouraged to immediately begin implementing the
conservation measures set forth above in subparagraphs (1) through (15) of
this section, as appropriate and practicable.

     (g) Each agency shall advise the public of the availability of its MOU
through a notice published in the Federal Register.

     Sec. 4.  Council for the Conservation of Migratory Birds.  (a) The
Secretary of Interior shall establish an interagency Council for the
Conservation of Migratory Birds (Council) to oversee the implementation of
this order.  The Council's duties shall include the following:  (1) sharing
the latest resource information to assist in the conservation and
manage-ment of migratory birds; (2) developing an annual report of
accomplishments and recommendations related to this order; (3) fostering
partnerships to further the goals of this order; and (4) selecting an
annual recipient of a Presidential Migratory Bird Federal Stewardship Award
for contributions to the protection of migratory birds.

     (b) The Council shall include representation, at the bureau
director/administrator level, from the Departments of the Interior, State,
Commerce, Agriculture, Transportation, Energy,  Defense, and the
Environmental Protection Agency and from such other agencies as

     Sec. 5.  Application and Judicial Review.  (a) This order and the MOU
to be developed by the agencies do not require changes to current
contracts, permits, or other third party agreements.

     (b) This order is intended only to improve the internal management of
the executive branch and does not create any right or benefit, substantive
or procedural, separately enforceable at law or equity by a party against
the United States, its agencies or instrumentalities, its officers or
employees, or any other person.

                                   WILLIAM J. CLINTON

    January 10, 2001.

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