Pursuant to the John D. Dingell, Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act (Act), the Department of the Interior (Interior) has developed an Interior-wide invasive species strategic plan. The Act became law on March 12, 2019. Title VII Section 7001 of the Act directs relevant Secretaries to take actions concerning invasive species. This includes the development of a strategic plan (Plan) in coordination with affected eligible States, political subdivisions of eligible States, in consultation with federally recognized Indian tribes, and in accordance with the priorities of Governors of eligible States.
At the onset of planning, Interior conducted eight teleconference listening sessions with federally recognized Indian Tribes and Tribal organizations, States, counties, Territories, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Alaska Native Corporations, and the Native Hawaiian Community. The issues raised in those sessions and through written comments substantively influenced the Plan. Prior to finalization, Interior requested public comment on the Plan through the Federal Register and conducted two consultations with Tribes and Alaska Native Corporations, two public listening sessions, a Congressional briefing, and presentations at various meetings. The input from this public comment period refined the content of the final Plan. (See August 2020 Press Release on draft Plan.)
The Plan sets out a vision for effectively managing invasive species through collaborative conservation to protect our nation’s environment and natural and cultural resources; economy and infrastructure; and public health. It both reflects ongoing work by Interior and its partners and leverages opportunities to respond to emerging issues. This Plan will guide Interior’s work on invasive species in the next five years.
The final Plan is available here.