Share your Ideas: Strengthening State, Tribal, and International Partnerships

I am excited that the Draft FY 2011-2015 EPA Strategic Plan includes a cross-cutting fundamental strategy for state, tribal, and international partnerships, and I hope that you will join me and share your thoughts on how EPA can strengthen and improve these partnerships to achieve environmental and human health outcomes.

Recognizing the importance of state, tribal, and international partnerships, Administrator Jackson highlighted building stronger partnerships as an agency priority. The cross-cutting fundamental strategy on “Strengthening State, Tribal, and International Partnerships” will guide the Agency in working towards that commitment.

EPA has laid out the guiding principles for this cross-cutting fundamental strategy in the Draft FY 2011-2015 EPA Strategic Plan. Going forward for EPA, successful partnerships will be based on four working principles: consultation, collaboration, cooperation, and accountability. By consulting, we will engage our partners in a timely fashion as we consider approaches to our environmental work so that each partner can make an early and meaningful contribution toward the final result. By collaborating, we will not only share information, but we will actively work together with our partners to use all available resources to reach our environmental and human health goals. As our work progresses, we will cooperate, viewing each other with respect as allies who must work successfully together if our goals are to be achieved. Through shared accountability, we will ensure that environmental benefits are consistently delivered nationwide. In carrying out these responsibilities, EPA will ensure through oversight that state and tribal implementation of federal laws achieves a consistent level of protection for the environment and human health.

As we work to develop and implement this cross-cutting fundamental strategy, we encourage your feedback and insights. How do you think the EPA improve can its partnerships with state, tribal, and international stakeholders to achieve environmental and human health outcomes? Share your thoughts on the Cross-Cutting Fundamental Strategies Discussion Forum.

EPA has a long history of collaboration on environmental issues. In recent years, EPA’s partnerships with states, tribes, and the international community have taken on new significance in the face of shared environmental and governance challenges, such as global climate change and improving children’s environmental health. It is EPA’s vision that environmental progress in cooperation with state, tribal, and global partners can catalyze even greater progress toward protecting the environment and human health.

About the Author: Michelle DePass is EPA’s Assistant Administrator for International and Tribal Affairs. DePass is a lawyer, public administrator and policy analyst who has worked with environmental and human and civil rights organizations, academic institutions, and labor. She has also worked in all levels of government, including city, state, and federal.