Announcement comes during CEQ Chair’s trip to New Mexico to highlight President Biden’s progress on climate, conservation, and environmental justice agenda

New Mexico, Michigan, Hawaii, and Minnesota join 10 other states, nine Tribes, and dozens of local communities committed to protecting freshwater resources

ALBUQUERQUE – Today in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality Brenda Mallory announced that more than 50 new state, local, non-profit, and business organizations have committed to advancing the America the Beautiful Freshwater Challenge, which sets goals to protect, restore, and reconnect 8 million acres of wetlands and 100,000 miles of our nation’s river and streams by 2030.

The 52 new members include state and local governments, Tribal entities, nonprofit organizations, and businesses committed to advancing their own policies and strategies for conserving and restoring the nation’s freshwater systems. Over 160 members have now signed on to support freshwater restoration in communities across the nation.

“Our nation’s lakes, wetlands, arroyos, and other freshwater resources are critical in our fight against climate change and to delivering clean drinking water for communities. As part of President Biden’s historic conservation efforts, we are catalyzing local action to help protect clean water from source to tap,” said Brenda Mallory, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality. “Members of the Freshwater Challenge will help us better protect and conserve our freshwater systems, continuing to advance the most ambitious clean water agenda in history.”

The full list of members of the America the Beautiful Freshwater Challenge is available here.

New members include:

  • The State of Hawaii
  • The State of Michigan
  • The State of New Mexico
  • The State of Minnesota
  • Nottoway Indian Tribe of Virginia
  • Portland, Oregon
  • Chatham County, Georgia
  • Alabama River Alliance
  • American Sustainable Business Network
  • Bottleworks
  • CalTrout
  • Chesapeake Bay Foundation
  • Here Today Brewery & Kitchen
  • Hildgaurd Ferments & Botanicals
  • Izaak Walton League of America
  • Mighty Arrow Family Foundation
  • National Association of Wetland Managers
  • New Mexico Wild
  • River Barrel Distributing
  • The Vineyards at Dodon
  • Washington Wild
  • Members of the Brewers for Clean Water Coalition

The America the Beautiful Freshwater Challenge is part of President Biden’s signature conservation policy, the America the Beautiful Initiative, which is working to conserve and restore America’s lands and waters for the benefit of all people through locally led, voluntary, and collaborative conservation efforts. Through his Investing in America agenda, President Biden is also investing over $50 billion to expand and improve water infrastructure, including $1.1 billion in New Mexico.

While in New Mexico, Chair Mallory also highlighted the Biden-Harris Administration’s work to advance environmental justice and expand access to nature for communities as part of the White House Campaign for Environmental Justice. At a community convening, she joined federal agencies to share information about funding opportunities under President Biden’s Investing in America agenda and resources available to help navigate the federal grant process. Chair Mallory also participated in a tour of projects in Albuquerque that have benefited from President Biden’s Investing in America agenda including the Justice40 Initiative, which set a goal that 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain federal climate, clean energy, affordable and sustainable housing, and other investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution.

Chair Mallory will also participate in a roundtable with Tribes, community organizations, and federal, state, and local officials to discuss increasing access to nature in New Mexico. This is the third community roundtable to advance the Biden-Harris Administration’s Memorandum of Understanding on Promoting Equitable Access to Nature in Nature Deprived Communities, following events in Chicago and New Orleans last year.


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