Date of this Version
This Order is issued by the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Commerce (Secretaries) pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, 16 U.S.C. 1531, as amended (the Act), the federal-tribal trust relationship, and other federal law. Specifically, this Order clarifies the responsibilities of the component agencies, bureaus and offices of the Department of the Interior and the Department of Commerce (Departments), when actions taken under authority of the Act and associated implementing regulations affect, or may affect, Indian lands, tribal trust resources, or the exercise of American Indian tribal rights, as defined in this Order. This Order further acknowledges the trust responsibility and treaty obligations of the United States toward Indian tribes and tribal members and its government-to-government relationship in dealing with tribes.
Principle 1. THE DEPARTMENTS SHALL WORK DIRECTLY WITH INDIAN TRIBES ON A GOVERNMENT-TO-GOVERNMENT BASIS TO PROMOTE HEALTHY ECOSYSTEMS.
Principle 2. THE DEPARTMENTS SHALL RECOGNIZE THAT INDIAN LANDS ARE NOT SUBJECT TO THE SAME CONTROLS AS FEDERAL PUBLIC LANDS.
Principle 3. THE DEPARTMENTS SHALL ASSIST INDIAN TRIBES IN DEVELOPING AND EXPANDING TRIBAL PROGRAMS SO THAT HEALTHY ECOSYSTEMS ARE PROMOTED AND CONSERVATION RESTRICTIONS ARE UNNECESSARY.
Principle 4. THE DEPARTMENTS SHALL BE SENSITIVE TO INDIAN CULTURE, RELIGION AND SPIRITUALITY.
Principle 5. THE DEPARTMENTS SHALL MAKE AVAILABLE TO INDIAN TRIBES INFORMATION RELATED TO TRIBAL TRUST RESOURCES AND INDIAN LANDS, AND, TO FACILITATE THE MUTUAL EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION, SHALL STRIVE TO PROTECT SENSITIVE TRIBAL INFORMATION FROM DISCLOSURE.