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Global Climate Change Research Data and Management Act of 2007

Bill Summary and Status

Reported (as amended) by the Full Committee June 27, 2007

Reported (as amended) by the Energy & Environment Subcommittee June 6, 2007

Introduced in the House February 13, 2007

Section by Section Summary

Title I: Global Change Research

Section 101: Findings and Purpose

The purpose of the bill is to reauthorize and amend the 1990 law authorizing the U.S. Global Change Research Program to provide for a continued earth and climate observation and research program. The bill also authorizes the program to provide information that will enable us to understand the potential impacts of climate change on both regional and global scales and to provide information that will allow federal, state, and local governments to adapt and respond to the effects of climate change.

Section 102: Definitions

Section 102 defines the following terms for the purposes of this legislation: global change, global change research, regional climate change, interagency committee, plan, and program.

Section 103: Interagency Cooperation and Coordination

Establishes an interagency committee to oversee and coordinate the program and defines the functions of the interagency committee, including the function of facilitating ongoing information exchange between the Program and regional, State, and local governments and other user communities.

Section 104: United States Global Climate Change Research Program

Section 104 directs the President to establish and interagency U.S. Global Research Program. The Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) is established as the lead agency for the U.S. Global Change Research Program and allows for the distribution of specific funds to cover activities which are not funded through any of the individual agencies’ budgets. A sum of $10 million dollars is authorized to be appropriated for OSTP for fiscal years 2008 to 2013.

Section 105: National Global Change Research Plan

Section 105 directs the President to develop an initial outline of the Plan to guide the interagency activities conducted under the U.S. Global Change Research Program, the final Plan in three years, and then update the plan every five years. This section also defines the contents of the plan and the minimum research elements of the plan, which must include facilitation of outreach and information exchange with outside user groups.

This section provides for two evaluations of the plan, one by the National Academy of Sciences, for the review of the scientific merit of the program plan. The other, for a review by the Center for Best Practices of the National Governors Association for a review of the plan’s utility for meeting the information needs of state, local and regional decision-makers. This section also provides for public review of the plan including its publication in the Federal Register with a comment period of at least 60 days.

Section 106: Budget Coordination

Section 106 requires the President to provide guidance to each Federal agency participating in the program to identify funds to carry out the program and to include a request for the activities of this program in his annual budget.

Section 107: Vulnerability Assessment

Section 107 requires the President to submit an assessment to Congress one year after enactment and then at intervals of every five years. The section defines the contents of the assessment to include: a summary of the findings of the Program and the uncertainties associated with the findings; analyses of changes to natural systems at regional and continental scales; analyses of the effects of global change on human social and economic systems at regional and continental scales; analyses of regional vulnerabilities to global change; and summary of policies and technologies to reduce the identified vulnerabilities and their rates of adoption.

Section 108: Policy Assessment

Section 108 requires the President shall enter into a joint agreement with the National Academy of Public Administration and the National Academy of Sciences to evaluate the costs and benefits of mitigation and adaptation policy options for addressing climate change. This assessment is due not later than 1 year after the enactment of this legislation and at least once every 4 years thereafter.

Section 109: Annual Report

Section 109 requires the President to submit an annual report to Congress with a description of the activities of the Plan during the past fiscal year, a description of the activities planned for the next fiscal year, and a description of the decision makers identified as potential users and the activities used to facilitate consultation with those user groups.

Section 110: Relation to Other Authorities

Section 110 requires coordination of the activities authorized under this program with those of the National Climate Program.

Section 111: Repeal

This section repeals the Global Change Research Act of 1990.

Section 112: Global Change Research Information

Section 112 requires the President to establish or designate a Global Research Information Exchange to make scientific research available to use in preventing, mitigating, or adapting to the effects of global change through electronic means.

Section 113: Ice Sheet Study and Report

Section 113 requires the Director of the National Science Foundation and the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to enter into an arrangement with the National Academy of Sciences to complete a study to examine the current status of ice sheet melt as caused by climate change with implications for global sea level rise. The study shall be completed no later than 18 months after the bill is enacted.

Section 114: Hurricane Frequency and Intensity Study and Report

Section 114 requires the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Director of the National Science Foundation to enter into an arrangement with the National Academy of Sciences to complete a study of the current state of the science on the potential impacts of climate change on patterns of hurricane and typhoon development, including storm intensity, track and frequency and the implications for hurricane- and typhoon-prone coastal regions.

 

Title II: Climate and Other Global Change Data Management

Section 201: Findings and Purposes

Section 201 establishes climate and global change data management and archiving as federal agency missions and establishes policies for managing and archiving these data.

Section 202: Definitions

Section 202 defines the following terms for the purposes of this legislation: metadata and working group.

Section 203: Interagency Climate and Other Global Change Data Management Working Group

Section 203 directs the President to establish and interagency working group to coordinate Federal global change data management and archiving activities. The section also defines the membership in the interagency group and requires the working group to report to Congress with recommendations for the maintenance and archiving of data related to global change.

Title III: International Cooperation in Global Change Research

Section 301: Findings and Purpose

The purpose of this title is to promote international cooperation on global change research.

Section 302: International Discussions

Section 302 directs the President to initiate discussion with other nations on coordination global change research. It also directs the President to initiate discussion with other nations on cooperation of research and development of energy technologies that have minimal adverse effects on the environment.

Section 303: Global Change Research Information Office

Section 303 directs the President to establish an Office of Global Change Research Information to disseminate foreign governments, businesses, and institutions information, which would be useful in preventing, mitigating, or adapting the effects of global change.

110th Congress