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Department of Agriculture, Executive (111 - 120 of 1,263 items)
Biosurveillance: Efforts to Develop a National Biosurveillance Capability Need a National Strategy and a Designated Leader
GAO-10-645: Published: Jun 30, 2010. Publicly Released: Jun 30, 2010.
The U.S. government has a history of employing health surveillance to help limit malady, loss of life, and economic impact of diseases. Recent legislation and presidential directives have called for a robust and integrated biosurveillance capability; that is, the ability to provide early detection and situational awareness of potentially catastrophic biological events. The Implementing Recommendat...
Selected Federal Agencies' Policies for Choosing Conference Locations
GAO-10-677R: Published: Jun 10, 2010. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 2010.
Press accounts in 2009 indicated that some federal agencies had issued directives to their staff discouraging them from choosing certain locations for conferences. This was because of the perception by some that the locations were resort areas and would not be the best use of taxpayers' money. Noting that government travel for meetings, conferences, and seminars is an important source of economic...
Food Irradiation: FDA Could Improve Its Documentation and Communication of Key Decisions on Food Irradiation Petitions
GAO-10-309R: Published: Feb 16, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 18, 2010.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), pathogens such as Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria cause an estimated 14 million cases of foodborne illnesses each year, resulting in about 60,000 hospitalizations and 1,800 deaths. Foodborne illness symptoms can range from mild gastroenteritis to life-threatening renal syndromes. The populations most susceptible to the more serio...
Global Food Security: Progress toward a U.S. Governmentwide Strategy Is Under Way, but Approach Has Several Vulnerabilities
GAO-10-494T: Published: Mar 11, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2010.
Global hunger continues to worsen despite world leaders' 1996 pledge--reaffirmed in 2000 and 2009--to halve hunger by 2015. To reverse this trend, in 2009 major donor countries pledged about $22.7 billion in a 3-year commitment to agriculture and food security in developing countries, of which $3.5 billion is the U.S. share. This testimony addresses (1) the types and funding of food security progr...
Global Food Security: U.S. Agencies Progressing on Governmentwide Strategy, but Approach Faces Several Vulnerabilities
GAO-10-352: Published: Mar 11, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2010.
Global hunger continues to worsen despite world leaders' 1996 pledge--reaffirmed in 2000 and 2009--to halve hunger by 2015. To reverse this trend, in 2009 major donor countries pledged $22 billion in a 3-year commitment to agriculture and food security in developing countries, of which $3.5 billion is the U.S. share. Through analysis of agency documents, interviews with agency officials and their...
Humane Methods of Slaughter Act: Weaknesses in USDA Enforcement
GAO-10-487T: Published: Mar 4, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 4, 2010.
This testimony discusses our work on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) actions to enforce the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act of 1978 (HMSA), as amended, which prohibits the inhumane treatment of livestock in slaughter plants and generally requires that animals be rendered insensible--that is, unable to feel pain--before being slaughtered. USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)...
Humane Methods of Slaughter Act: USDA Inspectors' Views on Enforcement (GAO-10-244SP), February 2010, an E-supplement to GAO-10-203
GAO-10-244SP: Published: Feb 17, 2010. Publicly Released: Feb 17, 2010.
This is an E-supplement to GAO-10-203. It presents the results of GAO's 2009 Survey of Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) Inspectors-in-Charge. The purpose of the Web-based survey was to collect nationwide information on inspectors' experiences and challenges with enforcing the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act (HMSA). We surveyed inspectors from a random probability sample of 257 slaughter e...
Rural Water Infrastructure: Improved Coordination and Funding Processes Could Enhance Federal Efforts to Meet Needs in the U.S.-Mexico Border Region
GAO-10-126: Published: Dec 18, 2009. Publicly Released: Jan 19, 2010.
A serious problem for U.S. communities along the U.S.-Mexico border is the lack of access to safe drinking water and sanitation systems. Inadequate systems can pose risks to human health and the environment, including the risk of waterborne diseases. Numerous federal programs provide grants, loans, or other assistance to rural U.S. communities, including those in the border region, for drinking wa...
Energy-Water Nexus: Many Uncertainties Remain about National and Regional Effects of Increased Biofuel Production on Water Resources
GAO-10-116: Published: Nov 30, 2009. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2009.
In response to concerns about the nation's energy dependence on imported oil, climate change, and other issues, the federal government has encouraged the use of biofuels. Water plays a crucial role in all stages of biofuel production--from cultivation of feedstock through its conversion into biofuel. As demand for water from various sectors increases and places additional stress on already constra...
International Food Assistance: A U.S. Governmentwide Strategy Could Accelerate Progress toward Global Food Security
GAO-10-212T: Published: Oct 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Oct 29, 2009.
The number of undernourished people worldwide now exceeds 1 billion, according to the United Nations (UN) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest prevalence of food insecurity, with 1 out of every 3 people undernourished. Global targets were set at the 1996 World Food Summit and reaffirmed in 2000 with the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) when the United State...