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Natural Resources and Environment (31 - 40 of 53 items) in Past Year
Levee Safety: Army Corps and FEMA Have Made Little Progress in Carrying Out Required Activities
GAO-16-709: Published: Jul 26, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 26, 2016.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have made little progress in implementing key national levee-safety-related activities required in the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014. More specifically, the Corps has been working to develop a national levee inventory, but the agencies have taken no action on the remaining key national...
Oil and Gas: Interior Could Do More to Account for and Manage Natural Gas Emissions
GAO-16-607: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 21, 2016.
The Department of the Interior's (Interior) guidance to oil and gas operators on its reporting requirements has limitations that may hinder the extent to which it can account for natural gas emissions on onshore federal lands (leases). Interior is required to ensure that oil and gas operations are conducted in a manner that minimizes waste. As part of its oversight activities, Interior requires op...
Nuclear Security: NRC Has Enhanced the Controls of Dangerous Radioactive Materials, but Vulnerabilities Remain
GAO-16-330: Published: Jul 1, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 15, 2016.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the 37 states it permits to grant licenses for radioactive materials—called agreement states—have taken several steps since 2007 to help ensure that licenses are granted only to legitimate organizations and that licensees can only obtain such materials in quantities allowed by their licenses. However, NRC and agreement states have not taken some meas...
Environmental Protection Agency: Status of Efforts to Address Nonpoint Source Water Pollution through the Section 319 Program
GAO-16-697R: Published: Jul 14, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 14, 2016.
From fiscal years 2011 through 2014, the most recent years for which complete data were available, states awarded at least 3,080 projects under the section 319 program for addressing nonpoint source water pollution, which comes from such sources as runoff from farms, managed forests, and urban areas. Similar to what GAO found in May 2012, the two most common categories of nonpoint source water pol...
Defense Weather Satellites: DOD Faces Acquisition Challenges for Addressing Capability Needs
GAO-16-769T: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
GAO found in March 2016 that the Department of Defense (DOD), in conducting a requirements review and Analysis of Alternatives (AOA) from 2012 to 2014, generally performed a thorough review for identifying capability gaps in meteorological and oceanographic data—also referred to as weather data—that needed to be met and determining the operational benefit of satisfying these gaps.In doing so,...
Polar Satellites: NOAA Faces Challenges and Uncertainties that Could Affect the Availability of Critical Weather Data
GAO-16-773T: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
As highlighted in a May 2016 report, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) program has continued to make progress in developing the JPSS-1 satellite for a March 2017 launch. However, the program has experienced technical challenges which have resulted in delays in interim milestones. In addition, NOAA faces the potential for a near-term ga...
Unauthorized Grazing: Actions Needed to Improve Tracking and Deterrence Efforts
GAO-16-559: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
The frequency and extent of unauthorized grazing on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Forest Service lands are largely unknown because according to agency officials, the agencies prefer to handle most incidents informally (e.g., with a telephone call) and do not record them. The agencies' databases contained information on nearly 1,500 incidents of unauthorized grazing where formal action w...
Environmental Protection: Status of GAO Recommendations to EPA
GAO-16-722T: Published: Jun 14, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 14, 2016.
As of May 23, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had implemented 174 of the 325 recommendations GAO made in fiscal years 2006 through 2015. EPA had not yet implemented the remaining 151 recommendations. The figure below shows the status of the 325 recommendations, which fall into six broad categories that relate to EPA programs and operations. These are: (1) management and operat...
Indian Energy Development: Interior Could Do More to Improve Its Process for Approving Revenue-Sharing Agreements
GAO-16-553: Published: Jun 13, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 14, 2016.
The Department of the Interior (Interior) recently issued guidance intended to streamline the review process and reduce the approval times of oil and gas revenue-sharing agreements—called a communitization agreement (CA)—that include Indian resources. Under the revised guidance, for example, oil and gas operators are to provide simplified, less detailed information in their CA applications. In...
Climate Change: Selected Governments Have Approached Adaptation through Laws and Long-Term Plans
GAO-16-454: Published: May 12, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 13, 2016.
Selected governments have approached enhancing resilience through climate change adaptation, and some have aligned adaptation with broader resilience efforts (see figure). All five selected governments have enacted laws and developed long-term plans as a part of their approaches to climate change adaptation. These plans established frameworks for addressing climate risks. For example, the European...