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FG 251 (Cabinet Committee on the Environment/Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality)

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Scope and Content Note

The file FG 251 contains correspondence and memoranda regarding both the short-lived Environmental Quality Council (not to be confused with the Council on Environmental Quality directed by Russell Train) and the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality. Both were created by Executive Order 11472 of May 29, 1969. On March 5, 1970, the Environmental Quality Council was renamed the Cabinet Committee on the Environment by Executive Order 11514. Under Reorganization Plan 2 of July 1, 1970 (Executive Order 11541), the Cabinet Committee on the Environment was terminated and its functions subsumed by John Ehrlichman's Domestic Council.

The Environmental Quality Council, assisted by the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality, advised the President on all matters relating to environmental quality. The Council reviewed Federal policies and programs to ensure that they took into account environmental effects, encouraged public and private involvement in environmental programs, and promoted scientific advances which would benefit the environment.

Principal correspondents include the President, Lee A. DuBridge, Science Advisor to the President, John C. Whitaker, Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs, and Laurence Rockefeller, Chairman of the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality.

The names and file designations within FG 251 can be quite confusing, so the following explanation should be reviewed. For the time period of 1969-1970, the designation FG 251 refers to the Environmental Quality Council/Cabinet Committee on the Environment. The documents relating to the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality are given the designation FG 251-1. After the termination of the Cabinet Committee on the Environment, the designation of FG 251-1 was eliminated and the designation FG 251 then began to be used for documents from the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental QUality.

For the folders which pertain to the Environmental Quality Council, the Executive folders consist of White House internal memoranda about administrative details as well as some background information on issues under consideration. The Executive folders for the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality, however, consist in the main of letters from the Chairman, Laurence Rockefeller, to the President. These letters are essentially color memoranda about the meetings of the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality. For both bodies, the General folders generally consist of letters from the general public expressing either their views of current environmental policy, or their desire to be appointed to one of the two committees.

On the folders, the terms Executive and General are used in the titles to indicate separation of documents according to source and handling. "Executive" items include communication among national, foreign, and state and local governments and their agencies, members of Congress, and selected prominent correspondents. "General" designates communications between Government officials and private citizens, institutions, and private interest groups. Where "/A" follows a numeric file designation, it indicates files relating to appointments, nominations, and resignations within that organization.

Some of the files related to FG 251 include:

White House Central Files: Subject Files

FG 6-17 Council on Environmental Quality
FG 21-8 Dept. of Commerce: Environmental Science Service Organization
WE Welfare

FG 251

This category contains letters and memoranda relating to the Environmental Quality Council/Cabinet Committee on the Environment until its termination, and, after that, to the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality. Included are agendas and background material for meetings of the Environmental Quality Council, as well as summaries of meetings and yearly reports from the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality.

FG 251/A

This sub-category contains Executive Orders, transmittal letters, and other documents pertaining to the appointments, nominations, and resignations of the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality only.

FG 251-1

This sub-category contains documents relating to the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality during the period of 1969-1970. The material herein is similar to the material above in FG 251.

FG 251-1/A

This sub-category also contains Executive Orders, transmittal letters, and other documents pertaining to the appointments, nominations, and resignations of the Citizens Advisory Committee on Environmental Quality. This 1969-1970 material is in every way similar to the 1971-1974 material of the redesignated FG 251/A.

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