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      house Committees
      House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
      Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation
      Water Resources and Environment
      House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
      Energy
      House Committee on Natural Resources
      Energy and Mineral Resources
      Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs
    IntroducedSeptember 29th, 2010

Bill Details

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Title

Securing Health for Ocean Resources and Environment Act

Official Title

To improve the ability of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Coast Guard, and coastal States to sustain healthy ocean and coastal ecosystems by maintaining and sustaining their capabilities relating to oil spill preparedness, prevention, response, restoration, and research, and for other purposes.

Summary

Securing Health for Ocean Resources and Environment Act or the SHORE Act - Requires the Under Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere to: (1) review the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) capacity to respond to oil spills; (2) be responsible for developing and maintaining oil spill trajectory modeling capabilities; (3) create and update NOAA's environmental sensitivity index products for each coastal area of the United States and for each offshore area that is leased or under consideration for leasing for offshore energy production; (4) review the current state of NOAA's capacity to monitor, map, and track subsea hydrocarbons; (5) establish a national information center on oil spills; (6) establish an initiative concerning the effects of oil spills resulting from aging and abandoned oil infrastructure; (7) develop an inventory of offshore abandoned or sunken vessels in the U.S. exclusive economic zone and identify priorities for potential preemptive removal of oil or other actions that may be effective to mitigate the risk of oil spills from such vessels; and (8) develop standard national protocols for oil spill response and clean up assessments and develop guidance and tools for oil spill responders. Amends the Oil Pollution Act to: (1) revise provisions concerning the uses of the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund; (2) establish a Gulf of Mexico Regional Citizens' Advisory Council to oversee and monitor facilities and tank vessels and establish offices in Gulf States; and (3) revise limits on liability and removal costs of responsible parties with respect to discharge of oil into or upon the navigable waters or adjoining shorelines or the exclusive economic zone from single-hull and double-hull tank ships and barges. Amends the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 to authorize the Secretary of Commerce to make grants to eligible coastal states to implement and revise specified policies and procedures for responding to oil spills. Requires the Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Under Secretary, to: (1) establish a long-term marine environmental monitoring and research program for the marine and coastal environment of the Gulf of Mexico to assess impacts of the oil spill caused by Deepwater Horizon on trust resources (defined as natural resources belonging to, managed by, held in trust by, appertaining to, or otherwise controlled by the United States, any state, an Indian Tribe, or a local government); and (2) direct research and take action to improve the ability of the United States to conduct oil spill prevention, response, and recovery in Arctic waters. Requires the Commandant of the Coast Guard to: (1) assess and take action to reduce the risk of, and improve the capability of the United States to respond to, a maritime disaster in the U.S. Beaufort and Chukchi Seas; (2) identify areas in waters in which routing or other navigational measures are warranted to reduce the risk of oil spills and potential damage to natural resources; and (3) analyze data on oil transported as cargo on vessels in U.S. navigable waters. Requires the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating to: (1) require response plans approved by the Coast Guard under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (commonly known as the Clean Water Act) to be updated at least once every five years and to utilize the best commercially available technology and methods to contain and remove a worst case discharge and to mitigate or prevent a substantial threat of such discharge; and (2) establish a program to evaluate and validate oil pollution containment and removal methods and technologies. Amends the Clean Water Act to revise provisions concerning the national response system to discharges of oil and hazardous substances, including requiring the President to issue guidance for Area Committees to use with respect to the closing and reopening of fishing grounds following an oil spill. Sets forth provisions concerning: (1) safety inspections of tank vessels that enter a U.S. port or place; (2) notices to states of transferring oil in bulk as cargo to, from, or within vessels; (3) notices to states and Indian tribes of marine casualties; and (4) publishing Incident Action Plans prepared and approved as a part of the response to an oil spill. Establishes the Federal Oil Spill Research Committee to coordinate a program of oil pollution research, technology development, and demonstration.

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