Natural resources (111 - 120 of 496 items)
Oil and Gas Bonds: BLM Needs a Comprehensive Strategy to Better Manage Potential Oil and Gas Well Liability
GAO-11-292: Published: Feb 25, 2011. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2011.
The number of oil and gas wells on leased federal land has increased dramatically. To help manage the environmental impacts of these wells, the Department of the Interior's (Interior) Bureau of Land Management (BLM) requires oil and gas operators to reclaim disturbed land in a manner it prescribes. To help ensure operators reclaim leased land, BLM requires them to provide a bond before beginning d...
Financial Management: NOAA Needs to Better Document Its Policies and Procedures for Providing Management and Administration Services
GAO-11-226: Published: Jan 31, 2011. Publicly Released: Jan 31, 2011.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a bureau within the Department of Commerce (Commerce). To help achieve NOAA's program goals, it relies on management and administration (M&A) services, such as legal support and information technology. In response to the fiscal year 2010 Consolidated Appropriations Act Conference Report, GAO (1) examined how NOAA's M&A services are fund...
Federal Lands: Adopting a Formal, Risk-Based Approach Could Help Land Management Agencies Better Manage Their Law Enforcement Resources
GAO-11-144: Published: Dec 17, 2010. Publicly Released: Dec 17, 2010.
Four federal agencies--the Forest Service in the Department of Agriculture and the Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Park Service in the Department of the Interior--are responsible for managing federal lands, enforcing federal laws governing the lands and their resources, and ensuring visitor safety. Illegal activities occurring on these lands have raised concerns...
Surface Coal Mining: Information on Clean Water Act Section 404 Permit Reviews under Enhanced Coordination Procedures in Appalachia, Focusing on West Virginia
GAO-11-101R: Published: Oct 19, 2010. Publicly Released: Nov 18, 2010.
In 2009, West Virginia accounted for about 43 percent of the surface coal mining production in Appalachia. Surface coal mining in the mountainous areas of Appalachia--a process often referred to as mountaintop mining--has generated opposition in recent years because of its impact on landscapes, streams, ecosystems, and communities. In mountaintop mining, before the underlying coal can be extracted...
Climate Change: A Coordinated Strategy Could Focus Federal Geoengineering Research and Inform Governance Efforts
GAO-10-903: Published: Sep 23, 2010. Publicly Released: Oct 26, 2010.
Policymakers have raised questions about geoengineering--large-scale deliberate interventions in the earth's climate system to diminish climate change or its impacts--and its role in a broader strategy of mitigating and adapting to climate change. Most geoengineering proposals fall into two categories: carbon dioxide removal (CDR), which would remove carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, and s...
Southwest Border: More Timely Border Patrol Access and Training Could Improve Security Operations and Natural Resource Protection on Federal Lands
GAO-11-38: Published: Oct 19, 2010. Publicly Released: Oct 19, 2010.
Over the last 5 years, Border Patrol has nearly doubled the number of its agents on patrol, constructed hundreds of miles of border fence, and installed surveillance equipment on and near lands managed by the Departments of the Interior and Agriculture along the southwestern border. In so doing, the agency has had to comply with federal land management laws, and some have expressed concern that th...
Onshore Oil and Gas: BLM's Management of Public Protests to Its Lease Sales Needs Improvement
GAO-10-670: Published: Jul 30, 2010. Publicly Released: Aug 30, 2010.
The development of oil and natural gas resources on federal lands contributes to domestic energy production but also results in concerns over potential impacts on those lands. Numerous public protests about oil and gas lease sales have been filed with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), which manages these federal resources. GAO was asked to examine (1) the extent to which BLM maintains and makes...
Oil and Gas Management: Past Work Offers Insights to Consider in Restructuring Interior's Oversight
GAO-10-888T: Published: Jul 22, 2010. Publicly Released: Jul 22, 2010.
The catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has drawn attention to the exploration and production of oil and gas from leases on federal lands and waters. The Department of the Interior oversees oil and gas activities on federal lands and waters. Onshore, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has oversight responsibilities. Offshore, the newly created Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulatio...
Superfund: EPA's Costs to Remediate Existing and Future Sites Will Likely Exceed Current Funding Levels
GAO-10-857T: Published: Jun 22, 2010. Publicly Released: Jun 22, 2010.
This testimony summarizes the findings of our report on funding issues related to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Superfund program. To protect human health and the environment from the effects of hazardous substances, Congress enacted the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) in 1980, which established the Superfund program. Since 1980, EPA has...
Oil and Gas Management: Key Elements to Consider for Providing Assurance of Effective Independent Oversight
GAO-10-852T: Published: Jun 17, 2010. Publicly Released: Jun 17, 2010.
The catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has drawn national attention to the exploration and production of oil and gas from leases on federal lands and waters. The Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) oversees onshore oil and gas activities, the Minerals Management Service's (MMS) Offshore Energy and Minerals Management oversees offshore oil and gas activities, and...