US Army Corps of Engineers
The USACE is the MACOM that is responsible for executing the Army's and the DOD's military construction and real estate acquisition and the Army's civil-works programs. Combined, these programs have given the USACE a dual perspective. The civil-works program places the USACE in the role of developing national infrastructure and the associated planning, designing and executing of complex projects of regional and national significance. The military construction and real estate acquisition program provides the USACE with military expertise as a result of its worldwide responsibilities and presence in DS of US forces. The combined capabilities of these two major programs and the more specialized expertise in its laboratories has made the USACE one of the premier engineering and environmental organizations in the world. As a result, the USACE is constantly engaged in projects in support of other countries, through other agencies (for example, the Agency for International Development and the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance), under the SFO program.
COMMAND AND CONTROL
The USACE subordinate commands are organized geographically and functionally. The HQ, USACE, is located in Washington, DC. There are four major organizational structures in the corps.
The division command is the C2 organization for the USACE. The division commanders provide executive direction and management of the subordinate district commands. The division's orientation is regional and provides a broad interface with regional interests. The division manages division-wide programs.
The district command is the operating arm of the division. All USACE districts in the US whose boundaries are delineated along major watershed basins have civil-works responsibilities. In addition, some of the districts whose work lines are set on state boundaries are responsible for executing military programs. The districts maintain in-house core capabilities in planning, engineering, construction, operations, and project management. OCONUS CINCs are supported as follows:
- US forces in Korea are supported by the Far East District (Seoul, Korea).
- US forces in Japan are supported by the Japan District (Camp Zama, Japan).
- Pacific command is supported by the Pacific Ocean Division (an operating division, Honolulu, Hawaii).
- Southern command is supported by the Mobile District (Mobile, Alabama).
- European command is supported by the Transatlantic Programs Center, Europe (Wiesbaden, Germany).
- Central command is supported by the Transatlantic Programs Center (an operating division, Winchester, Virginia).
USACE has the following laboratories:
- Waterways Experiment Station (WES).
- Topographic Engineering Center (TEC).
- Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL).
- Construction Engineering and Research Laboratory (CERL).
The centers provide support to the command in specialized or specific technical areas. They have no geographic boundaries.
SUPPORT FOR MILITARY OPERATIONS
The following are some of the support missions the USACE performs.
In support of power projection, the USACE has a two-fold mission. It provides engineering and construction support to Army power-projection platforms and supports platforms and strategic ports. It also leverages the commercial base to support operations in CONUS and OCONUS.
The USACE wears two hats of operations. Support to the Army is its best known responsibility. This entails acquiring real estate and facilities through construction and leasing. Less visible is the Army's topographic engineering support that the TEC provides to divisional terrain teams and topographic engineering battalions and companies. In addition, the USACE provides technical assistance within the whole engineering spectrum to divisional through EAC engineers (including technical support for the TCMS). Not quite as broad as the support to the Army, but just as important is that the USACE is the Air Force's design and construction agent.
The USACE is also a DOD construction agent, often referred to as the CCA. In this role, the USACE provides engineering and construction-management services to the other services and DOD agencies in DOD-designated countries. The DOD designation is predicated on the predominance of continuing the Central Intelligence Agency's (CIA's) presence and mission. Thus, the USACE is the CCA in Germany (with its heavy Army and Air Force presence), and the NAVFAC is the CCA in Italy (with its heavy Navy presence). Those countries for which there is no DOD-designated CCA, the CINC will usually designate a CCA for contingency support.
CONUS CONTINGENCY MISSIONS
The USACE is the single most active DOD agency under the capstone military support to civil authorities (MSCA) program. Most USACE operations in CONUS are executed under the following authorities:
- Public Law 84-99. Through this law, the USACE has unique authorities for flood fighting and disaster preparedness. The USACE operates flood-control, or damage-reduction, structures (dams and levee systems) and provides technical assistance to state and local authorities. In addition to flood control and coastal emergencies (FC&CE), the USACE has authorities for navigation on US waterways and other authorities provided under project authorization acts.
- FRP. The USACE supports the FEMA as the responsible agency for emergency support function 3 (ESF 3) of public works and engineering. In this plan, the USACE is a coequal of the other federal departments and agencies. When activated, the USACE is responsible for such engineering missions as
Debris removal and disposal.
Temporary repairs to and construction of facilities.
Acquisition and distribution of emergency water supplies.
Provision of electrical power.
At FEMA's request, the USACE also conducts damage surveys for public buildings. When DOD engineer units are activated to execute disaster-response missions under ESF 3, they are provided mission taskings from the USACE. Unlike OCONUS support, the prime-power battalion's assets remain under the C2 of the USACE in a CONUS disaster response.
Therefore, in a given disaster, the USACE may operate under its own authorities; execute FRP missions with support from the Commander in Chief, Pacific (CINCPAC) Command or the Commander in Chief, Atlantic (CINCLANT) Command; and execute missions in support of the CINCPAC or the CINCLANT.
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