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Environment & Natural Resources

The United States seeks to ensure that our international trade and environmental policies are mutually supportive. Our bilateral and international trade agreements and initiatives are valuable tools to protect the environment and level the playing field for U.S. industry abroad, and we are using these agreements and initiatives to tackle pressing environmental challenges—such as illegal fishing, wildlife trafficking, illegal logging and mining, and environmental conservation and protection.

The U.S. Trade Representative works to carry out trade policy through a range of multilateral, regional, and bilateral trade agreements and initiatives, notably:

  • Negotiating strong and enforceable commitments in the environment chapters of new trade agreements, including ground-breaking commitments to combat illegal fishing, illegal logging, and wildlife trafficking; discipline harmful fisheries subsidies; and address other pressing environmental issues such as air quality and marine litter.
  • Monitoring and enforcing environmental commitments in existing trade agreements, including commitments to maintain high levels of environmental protection, effectively enforce environmental laws, and promote public participation in environmental matters. Learn more here.
  • Working with the State Department and other U.S. government agencies to strengthen environmental cooperation and capacity building activities intended to help U.S. trading partners to meet commitments under U.S. trade agreements. 
  • Negotiating a WTO agreement to eliminate subsidies to IUU fishing, and to prohibit harmful fisheries subsidies that contribute overfishing and overcapacity and lead to the depletion of global fish stocks, with a view to constraining the world’s largest subsidizers.  Learn more here.
  • Conducting environmental reviews to evaluate the positive and negative environmental impacts of trade agreements under negotiation. You may read the reviews here.
  • Participating in the negotiation and implementation of multilateral environmental agreements, including the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Learn more here.
  • Promoting sustainable management of natural resources through multilateral and bilateral mechanisms, including by combating illegal fishing and promoting sustainable fisheries management and marine conservation, combating illegal logging and associated trade, and promoting sustainable forest management through the Forest Annex of the U.S.-Peru TPA, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, and other relevant fora.
  • Promoting transparency and public participation in FTA implementation, including public submission mechanisms such as for USMCA.  Public comments regarding any matter under the USMCA Environment Chapter can be submitted to USMCAenvironment@ustr.eop.gov.