Corps of Engineers Water Resources
Planning and Policy Studies Programs
The Institute for Water Resources (IWR) is a Corps of Engineers Field Operating Activity, located in
Alexandria Virginia. It was created in 1969 to analyze and anticipate changing water resources management
conditions, and to develop planning methods and analytical tools to address economic, social, institutional, and
environmental needs in water resources planning and policy. Since itsinception, IWR has been a leader inthe
development of tools and strategies to plan and execute Corps water resources planning.
About IWR Program
IWR's program emphasizes planning concepts for use by Corps field offices. Initially, this work relied heavily on the experience of highly respected planners and theorists, gained inthe many river basin and multiple purpose studies undertaken inthe 1960s. As these concepts matured and became a routine part of Corps planning, the emphasis shifted to developing improved methods for conducting economic, social, environmental, and institutional analyses. These methods were essential to implementation of the Water Resources Council's (WRC) Principles and Standards (P&S) and later, Principles and Guidelines (P&G) for water resources planning, which required a multi-objective analysis of tradeoffs among national and regional economic development, environmental quality, and social effects.
Subsequent Laws Used In Environmental Works
Subsequent laws, with new Public Law numbers, may amend the original law. Sometimes the amendment is an extensive revision of the entire law, and other times only minor changes are made. Also, the legislative title of the amending laws maybe the same or different. In each instance however, a new Public Law number is assigned to the law. In addition, some of the amendments to a given law appear as parts of other laws not related to the "parent" law.
makes it particularly difficult to obtain up-to-date information on an environmental law byusing
Public Law citations. Over a dozen Public Laws
were identified that amend the "Clean Water Act" (the Clean Water Act is just one of the
amendments to the Federal Pollution Control Act which was originally passed in 1948). Usually,
amendments contain onlythe modified portion(s) of the law. Special printings of a law, with the
cumulative amendments, at the time of printing, are sometimes available, but not always.
LEXIS is an electronic database that provides information on statutes, executive orders, and
regulations, which can be searched using keywords. It is available bysubscription through
LEXIS-NEXIS Services. Subscriber and hourly access fees vary depending upon the service and
subscription option selected. Within the Corps, this service is usually used by offices of counsel.
WESTLAW is an electronic database that provides access to the USCA, Federal regulations, case law, and administrative materials, as well as other law information and specialized data bases. West Publishing Company has a contract with the Libraryof Congress through the Federal Library and Information Center Committee (FLICC).
The Army Corps of Engineers has an
agreement with FLICC which has contracted with West Publishing Company for WESTLAW
under a network arrangement. Corps offices can subscribe to WESTLAW; subscriber and hourly
access fees vary depending upon the subscription option selected. Within the Corps, this service
is usually used by offices of counsel.
Responsibility In Water Resources
The Constitution of the United States limits the authority of the Federal Government to those powers expressly delegated or as may reasonably be inferred from those granted. All other powers belong to the states or the people. Regardless of the character of Federal undertakings, enabling authority must be found among the powers conferred upon the Federal Government by the states. Over the years the Congress has enacted large amounts of legislation in accordance with those powers to define the Federal responsibility as followings --
Federal Powers - Commerce Power - Proprietary Power - War Power - Treaty-Making Power - General-Welfare Power - Judicial Power - Compact Power.
House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works resolutions and specific legislation provide basic authorization for feasibility studies by the Corps. Generally, water resource developments recommended to the Congress in response to study authorities may not be implemented without being specifically adopted in law.
The majority of the Corps water resources projects or programs fall into that category. However, Section 201 of the 1965 Flood Control Act, as amended, delegated to the Secretary of the Army the right to administratively authorize water resources developments for which the estimated Federal cost is less than $15 million.
If Involving Federal Costs In Excess Of $2 million
A project involving Federal costs in excess of $2 million will be transmitted to Congress for specific authorization.
Regulatory activities over waters, 1899, 1972, 1977 and 1987; (b) Hydroelectric
power in dams, 1912 and 1917; (c) Flood control, 1917, 1927, 1936, 1974; (d)
Recreation navigation, 1932; (e) Recreation, 1944, 1962, and 1965; (f)
Irrigation (limited), 1944; (g) Water supply, 1944, 1958, and 1965; (h) Shore
and beach erosion protection, 1946, 1956, 1962, 1974, 1996; (I) Hurricane
protection, 1955, 1958; (j) Fish and wildlife conservation, 1958, 1965, and
1974; (k) Water quality, 1961, 1972, 1974; (l) Environmental concern and
emphasis, 1970; (m) Wastewater management, 1972; (n) Wetlands development, 1976
and 1992; (o) Groundwater damages, 1986; (p) Environmental Protection, 1990; (q)
Ecosystem Restoration, 1986 and 1996.