View all text of Chapter 53 [§ 4001 - § 4010]

§ 4001.
Assessments
(a)
Establishment of Inter-Agency Task Force
The President, through the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources of the National Science and Technology Council, shall establish an Inter-Agency Task Force on Harmful Algal Blooms and Hypoxia. The Task Force shall consist of a representative from—
(1) the Department of Commerce (who shall serve as Chairman of the Task Force);
(2) the Environmental Protection Agency;
(3) the Department of Agriculture;
(4) the Department of the Interior;
(5) the Department of the Navy;
(6) the Department of Health and Human Services;
(7) the National Science Foundation;
(8) the National Aeronautics and Space Administration;
(9) the Food and Drug Administration;
(10) the Office of Science and Technology Policy;
(11) the Council on Environmental Quality;
(12) the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention;
(13) the Army Corps of Engineers; and
(14) other Federal agencies as the President considers appropriate.
(b)
Assessment of harmful algal blooms
(1) Not later than 12 months after November 13, 1998, the Task Force, in cooperation with the coastal States, Indian tribes, and local governments, industry (including agricultural organizations), academic institutions, and non-governmental organizations with expertise in coastal zone management, shall complete and submit to the Congress an assessment which examines the ecological and economic consequences of harmful algal blooms, alternatives for reducing, mitigating, and controlling harmful algal blooms, and the social and economic costs and benefits of such alternatives.
(2)
The assessment shall—
(A) identify alternatives for preventing unnecessary duplication of effort among Federal agencies and departments with respect to harmful algal blooms; and
(B) provide for Federal cooperation and coordination with and assistance to the coastal States, Indian tribes, and local governments in the prevention, reduction, management, mitigation, and control of harmful algal blooms and their environmental and public health impacts.
(c)
Assessment of hypoxia
(1) Not later than 12 months after November 13, 1998, the Task Force, in cooperation with the States, Indian tribes, local governments, industry, agricultural, academic institutions, and non-governmental organizations with expertise in watershed and coastal zone management, shall complete and submit to the Congress an assessment which examines the ecological and economic consequences of hypoxia in United States coastal waters, alternatives for reducing, mitigating, and controlling hypoxia, and the social and economic costs and benefits of such alternatives.
(2)
The assessment shall—
(A) establish needs, priorities, and guidelines for a peer-reviewed, inter-agency research program on the causes, characteristics, and impacts of hypoxia;
(B) identify alternatives for preventing unnecessary duplication of effort among Federal agencies and departments with respect to hypoxia; and
(C) provide for Federal cooperation and coordination with and assistance to the States, Indian tribes, and local governments in the prevention, reduction, management, mitigation, and control of hypoxia and its environmental impacts.
(d)
Report to Congress on harmful algal bloom impacts
(1)
Development

Not later than 12 months after December 10, 2004, the President, in consultation with the chief executive officers of the States, shall develop and submit to the Congress a report that describes and evaluates the effectiveness of measures described in paragraph (2) that may be utilized to protect environmental and public health from impacts of harmful algal blooms. In developing the report, the President shall consult with the Task Force, the coastal States, Indian tribes, local governments, appropriate industries (including fisheries, agriculture, and fertilizer), academic institutions, and nongovernmental organizations with expertise in coastal zone science and management, and also consider the scientific assessments developed under this Act.

(2)
Requirements
The report shall—
(A) review techniques for prediction of the onset, course, and impacts of harmful algal blooms including evaluation of their accuracy and utility in protecting environmental and public health and provisions for their development;
(B) identify innovative research and development methods for the prevention, control, and mitigation of harmful algal blooms and provisions for their development; and
(C) include incentive-based partnership approaches regarding subparagraphs (A) and (B) where practicable.
(3)
Publication and opportunity for comment

At least 90 days before submitting the report to the Congress, the President shall cause a summary of the proposed plan to be published in the Federal Register for a public comment period of not less than 60 days.

(4)
Federal assistance

The Secretary of Commerce, in coordination with the Task Force and to the extent of funds available, shall provide for Federal cooperation with and assistance to the coastal States, Indian tribes, and local governments regarding the measures described in paragraph (2), as requested.

(e)
Local and regional scientific assessments
(1)
In general

The Secretary of Commerce, in coordination with the Task Force and appropriate State, Indian tribe, and local governments, to the extent of funds available, shall provide for local and regional scientific assessments of hypoxia and harmful algal blooms, as requested by States, Indian tribes, and local governments, or for affected areas as identified by the Secretary. If the Secretary receives multiple requests, the Secretary shall ensure, to the extent practicable, that assessments under this subsection cover geographically and ecologically diverse locations with significant ecological and economic impacts from hypoxia or harmful algal blooms. The Secretary shall establish a procedure for reviewing requests for local and regional assessments. The Secretary shall ensure, through consultation with Sea Grant Programs, that the findings of the assessments are communicated to the appropriate State, Indian tribe, and local governments, and to the general public.

(2)
Purpose
Local and regional assessments shall examine—
(A) the causes and ecological consequences, and the economic cost, of hypoxia or harmful algal blooms in that area;
(B) potential methods to prevent, control, and mitigate hypoxia or harmful algal blooms in that area and the potential ecological and economic costs and benefits of such methods; and
(C) other topics the Task Force considers appropriate.
(f)
Scientific assessments of hypoxia
(1)
(2)
The assessments under this subsection shall—
(A) examine the causes and ecological consequences, and the economic costs, of hypoxia;
(B) describe the potential ecological and economic costs and benefits of possible policy and management actions for preventing, controlling, and mitigating hypoxia;
(C) evaluate progress made by, and the needs of, Federal research programs on the causes, characteristics, and impacts of hypoxia, including recommendations of how to eliminate significant gaps in hypoxia modeling and monitoring data; and
(D) identify ways to improve coordination and to prevent unnecessary duplication of effort among Federal agencies and departments with respect to research on hypoxia.
(g)
Scientific assessments of marine and freshwater harmful algal blooms

Not less than once every 5 years the Task Force shall complete and submit to Congress a scientific assessment of harmful algal blooms in United States coastal waters and freshwater systems. Each assessment shall examine both marine and freshwater harmful algal blooms, including those in the Great Lakes and upper reaches of estuaries, those in freshwater lakes and rivers, and those that originate in freshwater lakes or rivers and migrate to coastal waters.

(h)
National scientific research, development, demonstration, and technology transfer plan on reducing impacts from harmful algal blooms
(1) Not later than 12 months after December 10, 2004, the Task Force shall develop and submit to Congress a plan providing for a comprehensive and coordinated national research program to develop and demonstrate prevention, control, and mitigation methods to reduce the impacts of harmful algal blooms on coastal ecosystems (including the Great Lakes), public health, and the economy.
(2)
The plan shall—
(A) establish priorities and guidelines for a competitive, peer reviewed, merit based interagency research, development, demonstration, and technology transfer program on methods for the prevention, control, and mitigation of harmful algal blooms;
(B) identify ways to improve coordination and to prevent unnecessary duplication of effort among Federal agencies and departments with respect to the actions described in paragraph (1); and
(C) include to the maximum extent practicable diverse institutions, including Historically Black Colleges and Universities and those serving large proportions of Hispanics, Native Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, and other underrepresented populations.
(3) The Secretary of Commerce, in conjunction with other appropriate Federal agencies, shall establish a research, development, demonstration, and technology transfer program that meets the priorities and guidelines established under paragraph (2)(A). The Secretary shall ensure, through consultation with Sea Grant Programs, that the results and findings of the program are communicated to State, Indian tribe, and local governments, and to the general public.
(i)
Report
Not later than 2 years after the date the Action Strategy is submitted under section 4003 of this title, the Under Secretary shall submit a report to Congress that describes—
(1) the proceedings of the annual Task Force meetings;
(2) the activities carried out under the Program, including the regional and subregional parts of the Action Strategy;
(3) the budget related to the activities under paragraph (2);
(4) the progress made on implementing the Action Strategy; and
(5) any need to revise or terminate research and activities under the Program.
(Pub. L. 105–383, title VI, § 603, Nov. 13, 1998, 112 Stat. 3448; Pub. L. 108–456, title I, §§ 102–104, Dec. 10, 2004, 118 Stat. 3630, 3631; Pub. L. 113–124, §§ 3, 6, 10(b), June 30, 2014, 128 Stat. 1379, 1383, 1386; Pub. L. 115–423, § 9(c), (d), Jan. 7, 2019, 132 Stat. 5462.)