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 Resource Type: Report
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

Date: April 21, 2011
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the modernization of the Coast Guard's polar icebreaker fleet, which performs a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions. The Coast Guard's two heavy polar icebreakers-Polar Star and Polar Sea-have exceeded their intended 30-year service lives, and neither is currently in operational condition.
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Coastal Zone Management: Background and Reauthorization Issues

Coastal Zone Management: Background and Reauthorization Issues

Date: June 20, 2008
Creator: Upton, Harold F.
Description: This report provides an overview of the coastal population and costal environmental threats. The report discusses the implementation and reauthorization Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) that was first enacted in 1972. Congress has reauthorized or amended this act eight times since 1972, responding to changing issues combined with a continuing interest in assisting states to manage their coastal resources.
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Coastal Zone Management Reauthorization: An Overview

Coastal Zone Management Reauthorization: An Overview

Date: March 14, 2000
Creator: Zinn, Jeffrey A
Description: Congress is considering legislation that would reauthorize the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972. This overview summarizes the programs created by this act and its amendments, and outlines issues associated with reauthorization. These issues include reauthorizing funding, altering grant programs, changing the National Estuarine Research Reserve system, funding to implement nonpoint water pollution requirements, protecting private property rights, expanding program evaluation efforts, and examining effects of personal water craft on the coastal requirement. A reauthorization bill has been reported by the House Resources Committee (H.R. 2669, H. Rept. 106-485), and floor action is anticipated soon. In the Senate, no action has been taken.
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Commercial Fishery Disaster Assistance

Commercial Fishery Disaster Assistance

Date: May 2, 2008
Creator: Upton, Harold F.
Description: This report discusses disaster relief for commercial fishery, which be provided by the federal government to assist the fishing industry when it is affected by a commercial fishery failure.
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Commercial Fishing: Economic Aid and Capacity Reduction

Commercial Fishing: Economic Aid and Capacity Reduction

Date: April 14, 1997
Creator: Read, Andrew G & Buck, Eugene H
Description: Both experience and economic models show that, in the absence of enforceable access or catch restrictions, competition among commercial fishermen results in an expansion of fishing capacity, and resultant fishing effort, beyond the sustainable limits of the fish population being pursued. The spiral of increasing effort and diminishing returns (i.e., rent dissipation) has helped to fuel increases in fish prices that reduce benefits to consumers and processors; has shifted many fish populations toward smaller, younger fish that typically command lower prices; and in many cases has reduced yields far below achievable levels. Congress has considered several approaches to address concerns about overcapitalization and excess capacity in the fishing industry.
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Cruise Ship Pollution: Background, Laws and Regulations, and Key Issues

Cruise Ship Pollution: Background, Laws and Regulations, and Key Issues

Date: July 1, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: This report describes the several types of waste streams that cruise ships may discharge and emit. It identifies the complex body of international and domestic laws that address pollution from cruise ships. It then describes federal and state legislative activity concerning cruise ships in Alaskan waters and activities in a few other states, as well as current industry initiatives to manage cruise ship pollution.
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Deep Seabed Mining: U.S. Interests and the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea

Deep Seabed Mining: U.S. Interests and the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea

Date: April 7, 1995
Creator: Mielke, James E
Description: On July 29, 1994, the United States signed the Agreement Relating to the Implementation of Part XI of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982. This agreement substantially reforms the seabed mining provisions of the 1982 Convention, which the United States found objectionable. In signing the Agreement, President Clinton accepted provisional application of it which enables the United States to participate in the International Seabed Authority (ISA) and its organs and bodies. On November 16, 1994, the U.N. Law of the Sea Convention entered into force without accession by the United States.The treaty document was referred to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations late in the 103d Congress and awaits committee action in the 104th Congress.
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The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and the Gulf of Mexico Fishing Industry

The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and the Gulf of Mexico Fishing Industry

Date: February 17, 2011
Creator: Upton, Harold F.
Description: This report summarizes information related to damages caused by the Deepwater oil spill to Gulf fisheries and efforts to mitigate these damages.
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The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Coastal Wetland and Wildlife Impacts and Response

The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Coastal Wetland and Wildlife Impacts and Response

Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne & Copeland, Claudia
Description: The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, and the resulting oil spill began a cascade of effects on the coastal areas of the Gulf and on the wealth of species that inhabit those areas. This report addresses the importance of wetlands in general, the ecology of the coastal wetlands in the Gulf, impacts of oil spills on wetland habitats, response options, the implications of hurricane season for the spill's impacts, and cleanup and recovery issues. The emphasis is on the nearshore environment, although a few species found in deeper waters will be mentioned. In addition, some lessons from past spills such as the Exxon Valdez in Alaska will be discussed, along with issues that may arise as response and recovery transition to restoration of the Gulf.
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Department of the Interior (DOI) Reorganization of Ocean Energy Programs

Department of the Interior (DOI) Reorganization of Ocean Energy Programs

Date: July 11, 2012
Creator: Hagerty, Curry L.
Description: This report looks at recent Department of the Interior (DOI) institutional reforms and use of its new regulatory framework. These changes are meant to facilitate ocean energy development that was mandated by the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA).
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