Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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Water Resources Development Act (WRDA): Corps of Engineers Project Authorization Issues

Description: WRDA is the main legislative vehicle for Corps civil works authorizations. This report considers the current status of WRDA and major issues shaping WRDA consideration in the 110th Congress, including changes to Corps project development practices and policies, coastal Louisiana wetlands restoration activities, Upper Mississippi River Illinois Waterway (UMR-IWW) investments, and Everglades restoration projects.
Date: October 4, 2007
Creator: Carter, Nicole T.; Hughes, H. S.; Sheikh, Pervaze A. & Zinn, Jeffrey A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA's Proposed Vessel General Permits: Background and Issues

Description: 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.
Date: June 18, 2012
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Firearms at Army Corps Water Resources Projects: Proposed Legislation and Issues for Congress

Description: 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.
Date: July 12, 2012
Creator: Carter, Nicole T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

35 Years of Water Policy: The 1973 National Water Commission and Present Challenges

Description: 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.
Date: May 11, 2009
Creator: Cody, Betsy A. & Carter, Nicole T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water Resource Issues in the 113th Congress

Description: This report provides an overview of the federal role in water resources development, management, and protection, including a discussion of the two major federal water resources agencies and related legislation. It also discusses overarching policy issues, such as flood and drought management and response; project funding and authorization priorities; and aquatic ecosystem restoration.
Date: January 31, 2013
Creator: Cody, Betsy A.; Stern, Charles V.; Carter, Nicole T. & Sheikh, Pervaze A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA's Vessel General Permits: Background and Issues

Description: 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).
Date: January 29, 2015
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Firearms at Army Corps Water Resource Projects: Proposed Legislation and Issues for Congress

Description: 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.
Date: January 27, 2015
Creator: Carter, Nicole T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA's Proposed Vessel General Permits: Background and Issues

Description: 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).
Date: June 18, 2012
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Drought in the United States: Causes and Issues for Congress

Description: 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.
Date: August 15, 2012
Creator: Folger, Peter; Cody, Betsy A. & Carter, Nicole T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Drought in the United States: Causes and Issues for Congress

Description: This report defines drought and discusses its background and cause in the United States. It looks in detail at the 2007-2009 California drought as well as drought in the American West in general. Lastly, it discusses the future of U.S. drought and how congressional policy can affect drought.
Date: June 12, 2012
Creator: Folger, Peter; Cody, Betsy A. & Carter, Nicole T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Drought Legislation: Comparison of Selected Provisions in H.R. 2898 and S. 1894

Description: This report summarizes the provisions of S. 1894, as introduced, and H.R. 2898, as passed by the House for conservation of fish species and their habitats in drought-stricken areas. It identifies comparable provisions between the two bills and discusses some of the ways in which those provisions overlap or differ. It also summarizes selected other major provisions in each bill.
Date: September 4, 2015
Creator: Stern, Charles V.; Sheikh, Pervaze A.; Cody, Betsy A.; Carter, Nicole T. & Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Western Water and Drought: Legislative Analysis of H.R. 2898 and S. 1894

Description: This report summarizes and analyzes several key provisions in H.R. 2898 and S. 1894. It includes analysis of provisions specific to California, such as the management of threatened and endangered fish populations in relation to pumping operations of the Central Valley Project (CVP) and the State Water Project (SWP) as well as provisions that are broader in scope and might have nationwide implications.
Date: December 23, 2015
Creator: Sheikh, Pervaze A.; Cody, Betsy A.; Stern, Charles V.; Carter, Nicole T.; Luther, Linda & Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Drought Policy, Response, and Preparedness

Description: This report examines the various ways Congress and other federal, state, and local policymakers are considering to prepare for and respond to drought; how to coordinate actions and assign responsibilities; and who bears the costs of impacts, disaster response, and long-term adjustment to drought.
Date: October 27, 2014
Creator: Carter, Nicole T. & Cody, Betsy A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wetland Issues

Description: This report discusses various wetland policy topics, of particular interest are statements by the Bush Administration shortly after the 2004 election that restoration of 3 million wetland acres would be a priority.
Date: April 5, 2006
Creator: Zinn, Jeffrey A. & Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The "Waters of the United States" Rule: Legislative Options and 114th Congress Responses

Description: This report discusses legislative activity in the 114th Congress regarding a major regulatory initiative related to the "waters of the United States" rule. Despite the court's stay of the rule, some in Congress favor halting the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) and the Corps' current approach to defining "waters of the United States."
Date: December 29, 2016
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Energy-Water Nexus: The Water Sector's Energy Use

Description: 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.
Date: January 3, 2014
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Emergency Water Assistance During Drought: Federal Non-Agricultural Programs

Description: 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.
Date: February 26, 2014
Creator: Carter, Nicole T.; Cowan, Tadlock & Barrett, Joanna
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector

Description: 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.
Date: December 15, 2010
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Legislative Approaches to Defining "Waters of the United States"

Description: 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.
Date: December 29, 2010
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector

Description: 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.
Date: July 28, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hydropower: Federal and Nonfederal Investment

Description: 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.
Date: January 22, 2013
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi; Stern, Charles V. & Vann, Adam
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector

Description: 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.
Date: November 28, 2012
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Legislative Approaches to Defining "Waters of the United States"

Description: 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.
Date: April 30, 2010
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department