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Natural Resources and Environment (401 - 450 of 3,480 items)
Forest Service: Emerging Issues Highlight the Need to Address Persistent Management Challenges
GAO-09-443T: Published: Mar 11, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2009.
The Forest Service, within the Department of Agriculture, manages over 190 million acres of forest and grassland. The agency is responsible for managing its lands for various purposes--including recreation, grazing, timber harvesting, and others--while ensuring that such activities do not impair the lands' long-term productivity. Carrying out these often competing responsibilities has been made mo...
Hazardous Materials: EPA's Assessment of Sites That May Have Received Asbestos-Contaminated Ore from Libby, Montana (GAO-09-7SP, March 2009), an E-supplement to GAO-09-6R
GAO-09-7SP: Published: Mar 10, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 10, 2009.
Vermiculite, a fibrous mineral with many commercial and industrial uses, was mined in Libby, Montana, from 1923 through the early 1990s, when the mine was closed. While the mine was operating, ore was shipped to hundreds of processing and receiving sites throughout the United States. The vermiculite ore from the Libby mine was contaminated with asbestos. In 2000, EPA began cleaning up asbestos con...
Climate Change: Observations on the Potential Role of Carbon Offsets in Climate Change Legislation
GAO-09-456T: Published: Mar 5, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 5, 2009.
Carbon offsets--reductions of greenhouse gas emissions from an activity in one place to compensate for emissions elsewhere--can reduce the cost of regulatory programs to limit emissions because the cost of creating an offset may be less than the cost of requiring entities to make the reductions themselves. To be credible, however, an offset must be additional--it must reduce emissions below the qu...
Department of Energy: Contract and Project Management Concerns at the National Nuclear Security Administration and Office Of Environmental Management
GAO-09-406T: Published: Mar 4, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 4, 2009.
The Department of Energy (DOE) manages over 100 construction projects with estimated costs over $90 billion and 97 nuclear waste cleanup projects with estimated costs over $230 billion. DOE has about 14,000 employees to oversee the work of more than 93,000 contractor employees. Due to DOE's history of inadequate oversight and management of contractors, GAO continues to include DOE contract and pro...
Environmental Protection Agency: Major Management Challenges
GAO-09-434: Published: Mar 4, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 4, 2009.
The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) overarching mission is to protect human health and the environment by implementing and enforcing environmental laws intended to improve the quality of the nation's air and water and to protect its land. EPA's policies and programs affect virtually all segments of the economy, society, and government. As such, it operates in a highly complex and controver...
Department of the Interior: Major Management Challenges
GAO-09-425T: Published: Mar 3, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 3, 2009.
The Department of the Interior is responsible for managing much of the nation's vast natural resources. Its agencies implement an array of programs intended to protect these precious resources for future generations while also allowing certain uses of them, such as oil and gas development and recreation. In some cases, Interior is authorized to collect royalties and fees for these uses. Over the y...
Chemical Regulation: Options for Enhancing the Effectiveness of the Toxic Substances Control Act
GAO-09-428T: Published: Feb 26, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 26, 2009.
Congress passed the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in 1976, authorizing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to obtain information on the risks of industrial chemicals and to control those that EPA determines pose an unreasonable risk. However, EPA does not have sufficient chemical assessment information to determine whether it should establish controls to limit public exposure to many c...
Hardrock Mining: Information on Types of State Royalties, Number of Abandoned Mines, and Financial Assurances on BLM Land
GAO-09-429T: Published: Feb 26, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 26, 2009.
The General Mining Act of 1872 helped open the West by allowing individuals to obtain exclusive rights to mine billions of dollars worth of gold, silver, and other hardrock (locatable) minerals from federal lands without having to pay a federal royalty. However, western states charge royalties so that they share in the proceeds from various hardrock minerals extracted from their lands. For years,...
Climate Change Science: High Quality Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data are a Cornerstone of Programs to Address Climate Change
GAO-09-423T: Published: Feb 24, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2009.
Elevated levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and the resulting effects on the earth's climate could have significant impacts in the United States and internationally. Potential impacts include a change in sea levels, ecosystems, and ice cover. The United States Congress is considering proposals to limit greenhouse gas emissions using market-based mechanisms that would place a price on emi...
Federal Land Management: Observations on a Possible Move of the Forest Service into the Department of the Interior
GAO-09-223: Published: Feb 11, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2009.
Growing ecological challenges ranging from wildland fires to climate change have revived interest in moving the Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Forest Service into the Department of the Interior (Interior). The Forest Service manages almost a quarter of the nation's lands but is the only major land management agency outside Interior. GAO was asked to report on the potential effects of moving th...
Federal Land Management: Potential Effects and Factors to Consider in a Move of the Forest Service into the Department of the Interior
GAO-09-412T: Published: Feb 24, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2009.
The Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Forest Service, which manages almost a quarter of the nation's lands, is the only major land management agency outside the Department of the Interior (Interior). Four federal land management agencies--the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Park Service in Interior--manage most of the 680 million acr...
Clean Air Act: Historical Information on EPA's Process for Reviewing California Waiver Requests and Making Waiver Determinations
GAO-09-249R: Published: Jan 16, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 17, 2009.
Emissions from mobile sources, such as automobiles and trucks, contribute to air quality degradation and can threaten public health and the environment. Under the Clean Air Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates these emissions. The act generally allows one set of federal standards for new motor vehicle emissions and pre-empts states from adopting or enforcing their own standards...
Endangered Species Act: Many GAO Recommendations Have Been Implemented, but Some Issues Remain Unresolved
GAO-09-225R: Published: Dec 19, 2008. Publicly Released: Jan 21, 2009.
The Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 protects plant and animal species that are either facing extinction (endangered species) or are likely to face extinction in the foreseeable future (threatened species) and protects the ecosystems upon which they depend. The act includes provisions for listing species that need protection, designating habitat deemed critical to a listed species' survival, d...
National Marine Fisheries Service: Improvements Are Needed in the Federal Process Used to Protect Marine Mammals from Commercial Fishing
GAO-09-78: Published: Dec 8, 2008. Publicly Released: Jan 7, 2009.
Because marine mammals, such as whales and dolphins, often inhabit waters where commercial fishing occurs, they can become entangled in fishing gear, which may injure or kill them--this is referred to as "incidental take." The 1994 amendments to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) require the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to establish take reduction teams for certain marine mammals...
International Climate Change Programs: Lessons Learned from the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme and the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism
GAO-09-151: Published: Nov 18, 2008. Publicly Released: Dec 2, 2008.
International policies to address climate change have largely relied on market-based programs; for example, under the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) phase I (2005 to 2007) carbon dioxide emissions reductions were sought by setting a cap on each member state's allowable emissions and distributing tradable allowances to covered entities, such as power plants. Beginning operation in...
Wildland Fire Management: Interagency Budget Tool Needs Further Development to Fully Meet Key Objectives
GAO-09-68: Published: Nov 24, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 24, 2008.
Wildland fires have become increasingly damaging and costly. To deal with fire's threats, the five federal wildland fire agencies--the Forest Service in the Department of Agriculture and four agencies in the Department of the Interior (Interior)--rely on thousands of firefighters, fire engines, and other assets. To ensure acquisition of the best mix of these assets, the agencies in 2002 began deve...
International Environmental Oversight: U.S. Agencies Follow Certain Procedures Required by Law, but Have Limited Impact
GAO-09-99: Published: Nov 20, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 20, 2008.
The World Bank Group lends about $40 billion annually to developing countries. Critics have claimed that some projects have harmed the environment and the local population. Title XIII of the International Financial Institutions Act of 1977 outlines in part the U.S. government's requirements for reviewing potential environmental and social impacts of proposed multilateral development bank projects...
Federal Land Management: Use of Stewardship Contracting Is Increasing, but Agencies Could Benefit from Better Data and Contracting Strategies
GAO-09-23: Published: Nov 13, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 13, 2008.
The Department of Agriculture's Forest Service and the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) have stewardship contracting authority, which allows the agencies to trade goods--such as timber--for services (e.g., thinning forests or rangelands) that the agencies would otherwise pay for with appropriated dollars, and to enter into stewardship contracts lasting up to 10 years. T...
Bureau of Land Management: Effective Long-Term Options Needed to Manage Unadoptable Wild Horses
GAO-09-77: Published: Oct 9, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 10, 2008.
The Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages about 33,100 wild horses and burros on 199 Herd Management Areas (HMA) in 10 western states. Under the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971, as amended, BLM is to protect wild horses and burros, set appropriate management levels (AML), maintain current inventory counts, and remove excess animals to prevent overpopu...
Aviation and the Environment: Initial Voluntary Airport Low Emissions Program Projects Reduce Emissions, and FAA Plans to Assess the Program's Overall Performance as Participation Increases
GAO-09-37: Published: Nov 7, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 7, 2008.
In 2003, Congress established a program to reduce airport ground emissions at commercial service airports in areas failing to meet or maintain air quality standards. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) administers the Voluntary Airport Low Emissions (VALE) Program and oversees the program's two sources of funding: Airport Improvement Program (AIP) federal grants or Passenger Facility Charges...
Oil and Gas Leasing: Interior Could Do More to Encourage Diligent Development
GAO-09-74: Published: Oct 3, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 3, 2008.
In 2007, the Department of the Interior (Interior) collected about $10.5 billion in revenues from companies that hold federal oil and gas leases. Interior's Minerals Management Service manages offshore leases, while its Bureau of Land Management manages onshore leases and leases in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. Acquiring a federal lease gives the lessee the rights to explore for and de...
Status of GSA's Implementation of Selected Green Building Provisions of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007
GAO-09-111R: Published: Oct 31, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 31, 2008.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, buildings in the United States account for 68 percent of the nation's total electricity consumption and 39 percent of its total energy consumption. In December 2007, Congress enacted the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) to, among other things, increase energy efficiency and the availability of renewable energy in federal bui...
Oil and Gas Royalties: MMS's Oversight of Its Royalty-in-Kind Program Can Be Improved through Additional Use of Production Verification Data and Enhanced Reporting of Financial Benefits and Costs
GAO-08-942R: Published: Sep 26, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 28, 2008.
In fiscal year 2007, the Department of the Interior's (Interior) Minerals Management Service (MMS) collected over $9 billion in oil and natural gas (hereafter referred to as oil and gas) royalties and disbursed these funds to federal, state, and tribal accounts. The federal portion of these royalties, which totaled $6.7 billion, represents one of the country's largest non-tax sources of revenue. I...
Environmental Enforcement: EPA Needs to Improve the Accuracy and Transparency of Measures Used to Report on Program Effectiveness
GAO-08-1111R: Published: Sep 18, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 21, 2008.
As part of its mission to protect human health and the environment, the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) enforcement office maintains civil and criminal enforcement programs to help enforce the requirements of major federal environmental laws such as the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act. EPA's civil and criminal enforcement programs work with the Department of Justice (DOJ), and in som...
Green Affordable Housing: HUD Has Made Progress in Promoting Green Building, but Expanding Efforts Could Help Reduce Energy Costs and Benefit Tenants
GAO-09-46: Published: Oct 7, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 7, 2008.
Rising energy prices and concerns about the environment have fueled interest in "green building"--resource-efficient construction and maintenance practices that reduce adverse impacts on the natural environment. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), spends an estimated $5 billion on energy costs annually in its affordable housing programs and has recently taken steps to reduce its...
Climate Change: Federal Actions Will Greatly Affect the Viability of Carbon Capture and Storage As a Key Mitigation Option
GAO-08-1080: Published: Sep 30, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 30, 2008.
Key scientific assessments have underscored the urgency of reducing emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) to address climate change. Many have cited carbon capture and storage (CCS) as an essential technology because it has the potential to greatly reduce CO2 emissions from power plants while allowing for projected increases in electricity demand. CCS involves capturing CO2 from a power plant's emissi...
Coastal Zone Management: Measuring Program's Effectiveness Continues to Be a Challenge
GAO-08-1045: Published: Sep 12, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 29, 2008.
In 1972, Congress enacted the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) to protect the nation's coastlines from growing demands associated with residential, recreational, commercial, and industrial uses. The act encourages coastal states and territories to develop programs to manage and balance economic development and coastal protection. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) adminis...
Carbon Offsets: The U.S. Voluntary Market Is Growing, but Quality Assurance Poses Challenges for Market Participants
GAO-08-1048: Published: Aug 29, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2008.
Carbon offsets--reductions of greenhouse gas emissions from an activity in one place to compensate for emissions elsewhere--are a way to address climate change by paying someone else to reduce emissions. To be credible, an offset must be additional--it must reduce emissions below the quantity emitted in a business-as-usual scenario--among other criteria. Assessing credibility is inherently challen...
Nuclear Waste: Action Needed to Improve Accountability and Management of DOE's Major Cleanup Projects
GAO-08-1081: Published: Sep 26, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2008.
The Department of Energy (DOE) spends billions of dollars annually to clean up nuclear wastes at sites that produced nuclear weapons. Cleanup projects decontaminate and demolish buildings, remove and dispose of contaminated soil, treat contaminated groundwater, and stabilize and dispose of solid and liquid radioactive wastes. Ten of these projects meet or nearly meet DOE's definition of major: cos...
Recent Actions by the Chesapeake Bay Program Are Positive Steps Toward More Effectively Guiding the Restoration Effort, but Additional Steps Are Needed
GAO-08-1131R: Published: Aug 28, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2008.
Since 1983, the states of Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia; the District of Columbia; the Chesapeake Bay Commission; and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have partnered to protect and restore the deteriorated Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. The partners established the Chesapeake Bay Program (Bay Program) to manage and coordinate a variety of restoration activities and in their most recent...
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations: EPA Needs More Information and a Clearly Defined Strategy to Protect Air and Water Quality
GAO-08-1177T: Published: Sep 24, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 24, 2008.
Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO) are large livestock and poultry operations that raise animals in a confined situation. CAFOs may improve the efficiency of animal production, but the large amounts of manure they produce can, if improperly managed, degrade air and water quality. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates CAFOs and requires CAFOs that discharge certain pollutan...
Wildlife Refuges: Changes in Funding, Staffing, and Other Factors Create Concerns about Future Sustainability
GAO-08-797: Published: Sep 22, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 24, 2008.
The National Wildlife Refuge System, which is administered by the Fish and Wildlife Service in the Department of the Interior, comprises 585 refuges on more than 96 million acres of land and water that preserve habitat for waterfowl and other migratory birds, threatened and endangered species, and other wildlife. Refuges also provide wildlife-related activities such as hunting and fishing to nearl...
Wildlife Refuges: Trends in Funding, Staffing, Habitat Management, and Visitor Services for Fiscal Years 2002 through 2007
GAO-08-1179T: Published: Sep 24, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 24, 2008.
The National Wildlife Refuge System, which is administered by the Fish and Wildlife Service in the Department of the Interior, comprises 585 refuges on more than 96 million acres of land and water that preserve habitat for waterfowl and other migratory birds, threatened and endangered species, and other wildlife. Refuges also provide wildlife-related activities such as hunting and fishing to about...
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations: EPA Needs More Information and a Clearly Defined Strategy to Protect Air and Water Quality from Pollutants of Concern
GAO-08-944: Published: Sep 4, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 24, 2008.
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) are large livestock and poultry operations that raise animals in a confined situation. CAFOs can improve the efficiency of animal production but large amounts of manure produce can, if not properly managed, degrade air and water quality. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for regulating CAFOs and requires CAFOs that discharge cert...
EPA Science: New Assessment Process Further Limits the Credibility and Timeliness of EPA's Assessments of Toxic Chemicals
GAO-08-1168T: Published: Sep 18, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 18, 2008.
The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) contains EPA's scientific position on the potential human health effects of exposure to more than 540 chemicals. Toxicity assessments in the IRIS database constitute the first two critical steps of the risk assessment process, which in turn, provides the foundation for risk management decisions. Thus, IRIS is a c...
Electronic Waste: EPA Needs to Better Control Harmful U.S. Exports through Stronger Enforcement and More Comprehensive Regulation
GAO-08-1044: Published: Aug 28, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2008.
Increasingly, U.S. consumers are recycling their old electronics to prevent the environmental harm that can come from disposal. Concerns have grown, however, that some U.S. companies are exporting these items to developing countries, where unsafe recycling practices can cause health and environmental problems. Items with cathode-ray tubes (CRT) are particularly harmful because they can contain 4 p...
Electronic Waste: Harmful U.S. Exports Flow Virtually Unrestricted Because of Minimal EPA Enforcement and Narrow Regulation
GAO-08-1166T: Published: Sep 17, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2008.
Increasingly, U.S. consumers are recycling their old electronics to prevent the environmental harm that can come from disposal. Concerns have grown, however, that some U.S. companies are exporting these items to developing countries, where unsafe recycling practices can damage health and the environment. Items with cathode-ray tubes (CRTs) are particularly harmful because they contain lead, a know...
Environmental Health: EPA Efforts to Address Children's Health Issues Need Greater Focus, Direction, and Top-Level Commitment
GAO-08-1155T: Published: Sep 16, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 16, 2008.
According to EPA, children face disproportionate risks from contaminants such as air pollution and lead paint. The health consequences to the country's 74 million children are significant. In 2006, 55 percent of children lived in counties exceeding allowable levels for at least one of the six principal air pollutants such as ozone which causes or aggravates asthma. Asthma is the third-most common...
Mineral Revenues: Data Management Problems and Reliance on Self-Reported Data for Compliance Efforts Put MMS Royalty Collections at Risk
GAO-08-893R: Published: Sep 12, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 12, 2008.
The Department of the Interior's (Interior) Minerals Management Service (MMS) collected the equivalent of over $9 billion in oil and gas royalties in fiscal year 2007, more than $5 billion of which it deposited in the U.S. Treasury; it dispersed the remaining approximately $4 billion to other federal, state, and tribal accounts. These royalties--payments made to the federal government for the righ...
Oil and Gas Royalties: The Federal System for Collecting Oil and Gas Revenues Needs Comprehensive Reassessment
GAO-08-691: Published: Sep 3, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 12, 2008.
In fiscal year 2007, domestic and foreign companies received over $75 billion from the sale of oil and gas produced from federal lands and waters, according to the Department of the Interior (Interior), and these companies paid the federal government about $9 billion in royalties for this oil and gas production. The government also collects other revenues in rents, taxes, and other fees, and the s...
Hurricane Katrina: Continuing Debris Removal and Disposal Issues
GAO-08-985R: Published: Aug 25, 2008. Publicly Released: Aug 25, 2008.
In 2005, as a result of Hurricane Katrina, more than 1,600 people lost their lives and more than a million were driven from their homes on the Gulf Coast. Tens of thousands of homes in New Orleans were flooded, many requiring either demolition or gutting before reconstruction. Nearly 3 years later, the New Orleans area still faces significant debris management issues and challenges. For example, t...
Chemical Safety Board: Improvements in Management and Oversight Are Needed
GAO-08-864R: Published: Aug 22, 2008. Publicly Released: Aug 22, 2008.
The principal role of the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) is to investigate accidental releases of regulated or extremely hazardous substances to determine the conditions and circumstances that led to the accident and to identify the cause or causes so that similar accidents might be prevented. Accidental releases of these toxic and hazardous chemicals occur frequently and oft...
Hardrock Mining: Information on State Royalties and Trends in Mineral Imports and Exports
GAO-08-849R: Published: Jul 21, 2008. Publicly Released: Aug 20, 2008.
Since the passage of the General Mining Act of 1872, miners have extracted billions of dollars worth of gold, silver, copper, and other hardrock (locatable) minerals from federal lands without having to pay a royalty. Congress is now considering amending the General Mining Act to, among other things, assess a royalty to ensure that the public is compensated for hardrock minerals extracted from fed...
Superfund: Funding and Reported Costs of Enforcement and Administration Activities
GAO-08-841R: Published: Jul 18, 2008. Publicly Released: Aug 18, 2008.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that one in four Americans lives within 3 miles of a hazardous waste site. To clean up these highly contaminated sites, the Congress established the Superfund program under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) in 1980. EPA, the principal agency responsible for administering the Superfund program, has...
Chesapeake Bay Program: Recent Actions Are Positive Steps Toward More Effectively Guiding the Restoration Effort
GAO-08-1033T: Published: Jul 30, 2008. Publicly Released: Jul 30, 2008.
The Chesapeake Bay Program (Bay Program) was created in 1983 when Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, the District of Columbia, the Chesapeake Bay Commission, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreed to establish a partnership to restore the Bay. The partnership's most recent agreement, Chesapeake 2000, sets out five broad goals to guide the restoration effort through 2010. This testimon...
Nuclear Waste: DOE Lacks Critical Information Needed to Assess Its Tank Management Strategy at Hanford
GAO-08-793: Published: Jun 30, 2008. Publicly Released: Jun 30, 2008.
The Department of Energy (DOE) manages more than 56 million gallons of radioactive and hazardous waste stored in 149 single-shell and 28 double-shell underground tanks at its Hanford Site in Washington State. Many of these aging tanks have already leaked waste into the soil. Meanwhile, DOE's planned process for emptying the tanks and treating the waste--mixing it with molten glass and solidifying...
Architect of the Capitol: Progress in Improving Energy Efficiency and Options for Decreasing Greenhouse Gas Emissions
GAO-08-917T: Published: Jun 18, 2008. Publicly Released: Jun 18, 2008.
In April 2007, GAO reported that 96 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions from the Capitol Hill Complex facilities--managed by the Architect of the Capitol (AOC)--resulted from electricity use throughout the complex and combustion of fossil fuels in the Capitol Power Plant. The report concluded that AOC and other legislative branch agencies could benefit from conducting energy audits to identify...
Climate Change: Expert Opinion on the Economics of Policy Options to Address Climate Change
GAO-08-605: Published: May 9, 2008. Publicly Released: Jun 9, 2008.
Elevated levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and the resulting effects on the earth's climate could have significant environmental and economic impacts in the United States and internationally. Potential impacts include rising sea levels and a shift in the intensity and frequency of floods and storms. Proposed responses to climate change include adapting to the possible impacts by plannin...
Oil and Gas Royalties: Litigation over Royalty Relief Could Cost the Federal Government Billions of Dollars
GAO-08-792R: Published: Jun 5, 2008. Publicly Released: Jun 5, 2008.
Oil and gas production from federal lands and waters is critical to meeting the nation's energy needs. This production provided about 31 percent of all oil and 29 percent of all natural gas produced in the United States in fiscal year 2007. Every five years, the federal government decides the areas in the offshore waters of the United States it will offer for leasing and establishes a schedule for...
Aboveground Oil Storage Tanks: More Complete Facility Data Could Improve Implementation of EPA's Spill Prevention Program
GAO-08-482: Published: Apr 30, 2008. Publicly Released: May 30, 2008.
Oil leaks from aboveground tanks have contaminated soil and water, threatening human health and wildlife. To prevent damage from oil spills, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued the Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) rule in 1973. EPA's 10 regions inspect oil storage facilities to ensure compliance with the rule. EPA estimates that about 571,000 facilities are subject...