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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
EPA's Proposed Vessel General Permits: Background and Issues
In November 2011 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed two Clean Water Act permits to regulate certain types of discharges from vessels into U.S. waters. This report is an overview of the proposed permits and two key issues: inclusion of numeric performance standards to limit ballast water discharges from vessels, and controversies about the role of states in regulating vessel discharges. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc98015/
Hydraulic Fracturing and Safe Drinking Water Act Issues
This report reviews past and proposed treatment of hydraulic fracturing under the Safe Water Drinking Act, the principal federal statute for regulating the underground injection of fluids to protect groundwater sources of drinking water. It reviews current provisions for regulating underground injection activities, and discusses some possible implications of, and issues associated with, enactment of legislation authorizing the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate hydraulic fracturing under this statute. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc97999/
Firearms at Army Corps Water Resources Projects: Proposed Legislation and Issues for Congress
This rport discusses issues for Congress regarding public safety and infrastructure security at water resource projects managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Proposed legislation would bar the Secretary of the Army from promulgating or enforcing regulations that prohibit individuals from possessing firearms (including assembled or functional firearms) at Corps projects and instead require that firearms possession comply with state law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc98027/
Locally Operated Levees: Issues and Federal Programs
The report discusses the role of levees in flood risk reduction, the shared responsibilities for levees in the United States, and the role of three agencies: FEMA, the Corps, and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). It also discusses federal assistance for levees, describes the debate about whether levees investments have a role in federal flood mitigation programs, and compares Corps, FEMA, and NRCS activities and authorities. Finally, the report outlines policy options for locally-operated levees that might be considered by the 112th Congress. Legislative proposals in the 111th Congress are discussed in an Appendix. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc99055/
Energy and Water Development: FY2011 Appropriations
This report discusses key budgetary issues for FY2011 involving the Energy and Water Development appropriations bill, which provides funding for civil works projects of the Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation, the Department of Energy, and a number of independent agencies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103087/
Drought in the United States: Causes and Issues for Congress
This report describes the physical causes of drought, drought history in the United States, and policy challenges related to drought. It also provides examples of recurrent regional drought conditions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122326/
Clean Water Act and Pollutant Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)
This report discusses the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program which regulates pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained; section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. The report focuses on new challenges facing the TMDL program, including more complex TMDLs, larger scale impairments, and nonpoint sources. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122259/
Inland Waterways: Recent Proposals and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the major issues for Congress which include whether to increase inland waterway funding in the future (and by what amount); the appropriate type of revenue stream (e.g., fuel taxes or lockage fees) for the user-required portion of these projects; division of the cost-share responsibilities between the federal government and commercial users (e.g., 50/50 or some other division); and whether to initiate process-based recommendations that some argue will improve the delivery and efficiency of Corps-led IWTF projects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc227683/
Global Access to Clean Drinking Water and Sanitation: U.S. and International Programs
Report that focuses on bilateral water supply, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) schemes authorized by the Water for the Poor Act. This report identifies some issues that donors and U.S. agencies face while carrying out global drinking water and sanitation projects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc227806/
Reallocation of Water Storage at Federal Water Projects for Municipal and Industrial Water Supply
Report that analyzes the legal and policy issues associated with reallocation of water under the Water Supply Act of 1958 (WSA) and industrial (M&I) water supply use at Lake Lanier as an example. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc227820/
U.S.-Mexico Water Sharing: Background and Recent Developments
This report is a primer on U.S. and Mexican water-sharing topics. It focuses on surface water quantity sharing and recent developments, including drought conditions. Due to Mexico's recent below-target deliveries of Rio Grande water to the United States, particular attention is given to the status, underlying causes, and responses to the Rio Grande water debt. This report describes: legal obligations and processes under the 1944 Water Treaty; drought conditions from 2010 to 2013; water sharing and developments in the Colorado River Basin; water sharing in the Rio Grande Basin and Mexico's water debt; and stakeholder, diplomatic, and legislative responses to Mexico's Rio Grande water debt. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc267861/
Clean Water Act and Pollutant Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)
This report discusses the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program which regulates pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained; section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. The report focuses on new challenges facing the TMDL program, including more complex TMDLs, larger scale impairments, and nonpoint sources. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc276865/
Energy-Water Nexus: The Water Sector's Energy Use
This report provides background on energy for facilities that treat and deliver water to end users and also dispose of and discharge wastewater. This report first discusses water-related energy use broadly and then energy for facilities that treat and deliver water to end users and also dispose of and discharge wastewater. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc284534/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the March 25 proposed rule to define "waters of the United States," particularly focused on clarifying the regulatory status of waters located in isolated places in a landscape, the types of waters with ambiguous jurisdictional status following the Supreme Court's ruling. It includes a table comparing the proposal to existing regulatory language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc284463/
Emergency Water Assistance During Drought: Federal Non-Agricultural Programs
This report discusses droughts in relation to several issues for Congress, including how to measure and predict drought, how to prepare, and how to coordinate federal agency actions responding to drought. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc284466/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the March 25 proposed rule to define "waters of the United States," particularly focused on clarifying the regulatory status of waters located in isolated places in a landscape, the types of waters with ambiguous jurisdictional status following the Supreme Court's ruling. It includes a table comparing the proposal to existing regulatory language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc306425/
Water Infrastructure Financing: Proposals to Create a Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) Program
This report discusses the "Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act," or WIFIA, program, which is one legislative option to finance water infrastructure projects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc306486/
Inland Waterways: Recent Proposals and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the major issues for Congress which include whether to increase inland waterway funding in the future (and by what amount); the appropriate type of revenue stream (e.g., fuel taxes or lockage fees) for the user-required portion of these projects; division of the cost-share responsibilities between the federal government and commercial users (e.g., 50/50 or some other division); and whether to initiate process-based recommendations that some argue will improve the delivery and efficiency of Corps-led IWTF projects. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463186/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462085/
Hydropower: Federal and Nonfederal Investment
This report explains how the federal government is involved directly in hydropower generation at federal facilities and in the regulation of nonfederal hydropower generation; the focus is on current roles and processes and common concerns and questions about changing those roles. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462519/
Water Infrastructure Needs and Investment: Review and Analysis of Key Issues
This report identifies a number of issues that have received attention in connection with water infrastructure investment. It begins with a review of federal involvement, describes the debate about needs, and then examines key issues, including what is the nature of the problems to be solved; who will pay, and what is the federal role; and questions about mechanisms for delivering federal support, including state-by-state allotment of federal funds. Congressional and Administration activity on these issues from the 107th to the 110th Congresses also is reviewed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462593/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report examines the possibility of damage to or destruction of the nation's water supply and water quality infrastructure by terrorist attack or natural disaster, which could disrupt the delivery of vital human services in this country, threatening public health and the environment, or possibly causing loss of life. Interest in such problems increased after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462752/
Mexico: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of political and economic conditions in Mexico followed by assessments of some key issues of congressional interest in Mexico: migration, trade, security, human rights, energy, and water issues. The report summarizes legislative action that has occurred related to these topics and refers to other CRS products and experts that can be consulted for further information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463192/
Mexico: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of political and economic conditions in Mexico followed by assessments of some key issues of congressional interest in Mexico: migration, trade, security, human rights, energy, and water issues. The report summarizes legislative action that has occurred related to these topics and refers to other CRS products and experts that can be consulted for further information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462477/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the March 25 proposed rule to define "waters of the United States," particularly focused on clarifying the regulatory status of waters located in isolated places in a landscape, the types of waters with ambiguous jurisdictional status following the Supreme Court's ruling. It includes a table comparing the proposal to existing regulatory language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462853/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the March 25, 2014 proposed rule to define "waters of the United States," particularly focused on clarifying the regulatory status of waters located in isolated places in a landscape, the types of waters with ambiguous jurisdictional status following the Supreme Court's ruling. It includes a table comparing the proposal to existing regulatory language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491404/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report examines recent congressional interest in the security of wastewater utilities, and whether or not to include water utilities in chemical plant security regulations implemented by Department of Homeland Security. Damage to or destruction of the nation's water supply and water quality infrastructure by terrorist attack or natural disaster could disrupt the delivery of vital human services in this country, threatening public health and the environment, or possibly causing loss of life. Interest in such problems has increased greatly since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491491/
Legislative Approaches to Defining "Waters of the United States"
This report seeks to clarify the scope of the Clean Water Act (CWA) in the wake of Supreme Court decisions in 2001 and 2006 that interpreted the law's jurisdiction more narrowly than prior case law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491565/
Water Infrastructure Financing: The Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) Program
Policy makers have recently been considering several legislative options to help finance water infrastructure projects, including projects to build and upgrade wastewater and drinking water treatment systems. This report examines one particular option, a "Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act," or WIFIA, program, which Congress included in the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 (WRRDA). As enacted (P.L. 113-121), the legislation creates a WIFIA pilot program based on provisions in Senate-passed S. 601 with some additions and modifications. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491030/
Legislative Approaches to Defining "Waters of the United States"
This report seeks to clarify the scope of the Clean Water Act (CWA) in the wake of Supreme Court decisions in 2001 and 2006 that interpreted the law's jurisdiction more narrowly than prior case law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc501952/
Analysis of H.R. 5781, California Emergency Drought Relief Act of 2014
This report provides a description and analysis of H.R. 5781, the California Emergency Drought Relief Act of 2014, which passed the House December 9, 2014. It includes a summary of key provisions of the bill, and compares it with two other bills from the 113th Congress aiming to address different aspects of drought and water management in California. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc501786/
Mexico: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of political and economic conditions in Mexico followed by assessments of some key issues of congressional interest in Mexico: security, human rights, trade, migration, energy, and water issues. The report summarizes legislative action that occurred related to these topics during the 113th Congress and refers to other CRS products and experts that can be consulted for further information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc501920/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, 2001, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503377/
EPA's Vessel General Permits: Background and Issues
This report covers two proposed permit drafts by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding Vessel General Permits (VGPs): one for large vessels to replace the 2008 VGP (draft VGP), and one for smaller vessels that currently are covered by a congressionally-enacted temporary moratorium (draft sVGP). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503309/
Firearms at Army Corps Water Resource Projects: Proposed Legislation and Issues for Congress
This report discusses issues for Congress regarding public safety and infrastructure security at water resource projects managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Proposed legislation would bar the Secretary of the Army from promulgating or enforcing regulations that prohibit individuals from possessing firearms (including assembled or functional firearms) at Corps projects and instead require that firearms possession comply with state law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503695/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, 2001, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503499/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, 2001, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503524/
U.S.-Mexico Water Sharing: Background and Recent Developments
This report is a primer on U.S. and Mexican water-sharing topics. It focuses on surface water quantity sharing and recent developments, including drought conditions. Due to Mexico's recent below-target deliveries of Rio Grande water to the United States, particular attention is given to the status, underlying causes, and responses to the Rio Grande water delivery shortfalls. This report describes: legal obligations and processes under the 1944 Water Treaty; drought conditions from 2010 to 2013; water sharing and developments in the Colorado River Basin; water sharing in the Rio Grande Basin and Mexico's water delivery shortfalls and stakeholder, diplomatic, and legislative responses to the rate of Mexico's Rio Grande water deliveries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503397/
Water Resource Issues in the 114th Congress
This report discusses recent congressional activity and possible topics for the 114th Congress. It provides an overview of the federal role in water resources development, management, and protection, with a focus on projects of the two major federal water resources agencies--Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps--and related legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503486/
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, 2001, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc503439/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the March 25, 2014 proposed rule to define "waters of the United States," particularly focused on clarifying the regulatory status of waters located in isolated places in a landscape, the types of waters with ambiguous jurisdictional status following the Supreme Court's ruling. It includes a table comparing the proposal to existing regulatory language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc505464/
Water Infrastructure Funding in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
This report identifies funding for water infrastructure programs and projects included in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (P.L. 111-5). The legislation directs additional appropriations to a number of existing federal programs that either directly invest in water infrastructure projects or provide assistance to states and localities for such activities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc505561/
Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Expenditures
This report reviews the legislative history of the Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) and legal challenges to it, discusses the advantages and disadvantages of alternative funding mechanisms, and describes the commercial context of current dredging activity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc505639/
Using Army Corps of Engineers Reservoirs for Municipal and Industrial Water Supply: Current Issues
This report discusses the limited use of federal reservoir storage for Municipal and Industrial (M&I) Water and the M&I water storage at corps facilities supply . digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626900/
California Drought: Hydrological and Regulatory Water Supply Issues
This report discusses California's current hydrological situation and provides background on regulatory restrictions affecting California water deliveries, as well as on the long-established state water rights system, which also results in uneven water deliveries in times of shortages. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626963/
Desalination: Status and Federal Issues
This report discusses desalination in the context of federal policy. Interest in desalination of seawater, brackish water, and contaminated freshwater has increased in the United States as the technology's costs have fallen and pressure to develop new water supplies has grown. Adoption of desalination, however, remains constrained by financial, environmental, and regulatory and social factors. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc627158/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed "Waters of the United States" Rule: Congressional Response and Options
This report discusses four legislative options that Congress could consider to halt or redirect the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineer's proposed "waters of the United States" rule: the Congressional Review Act, appropriations bill limitations, targeted legislation, and broad amendments to the Clean Water Act. Each option faces a steep path to enactment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689506/
Perchlorate Contamination of Drinking Water: Regulatory Issues and Legislative Actions
This report reviews perchlorate contamination issues and related developments. Perchlorate is the explosive component of solid rocket fuel, fireworks, road flares, and other products. Used heavily by the Department of Defense (DOD) and related industries, perchlorate also occurs naturally and is present in some organic fertilizer. This soluble, persistent compound has been detected in drinking water supplies, especially in California. It also has been found in milk and many foods. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689496/
Water Infrastructure Funding in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
This report identifies funding for water infrastructure programs and projects contained in the legislation, including amounts in the House- and Senate-passed versions that preceded the conference agreement. Among the purposes identified in the legislation are preservation and creation of jobs and promotion of U.S. economic recovery, and investment in transportation, environmental protection, and other infrastructure that will provide long-term economic benefits. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689440/
35 Years of Water Policy: The 1973 National Water Commission and Present Challenges
This report presents the National Water Commission's (NWC) recommendations and analyzes how issues targeted by the recommendations have evolved during the intervening years. The report focuses on key federal-level recommendations, thereby targeting what has been accomplished since 1973, what issues remain unresolved, and what additional concerns have developed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700749/