# National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997

## Science Center Objects

This file contains the 1997 Reauthorization of the National Geologic Mapping Act, as codified in Chapter 43, Sections 31a-h of the U.S. Code. The U.S. Code may be found in public libraries. Because the Code does not contain the Public Law number and preamble to the Act, that information is given below, followed by the Code.

PUBLIC LAW 105-36
105th Congress
signed Aug. 5, 1997

[the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992 was:
PUBLIC LAW 102-285
102d Congress
signed May 18, 1992]

An Act

To reauthorize and amend the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the "National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997"

...
...

TITLE 43. PUBLIC LANDS
CHAPTER 2. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY

43 USCS § 31a (1998)

§ 31a. Findings and Purpose [from the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992]

(a) Findings

The Congress finds and declares that--

(1) during the past 2 decades, the production of geologic maps has been drastically curtailed;

(2) geologic maps are the primary data base for virtually all applied and basic earth-science investigations, including--

(A) exploration for and development of mineral, energy, and water resources;

(B) screening and characterizing sites for toxic and nuclear waste disposal;

(C) land use evaluation and planning for environmental protection;

(D) earthquake hazards reduction;

(E) predicting volcanic hazards;

(F) design and construction of infrastructure requirements such as utility lifelines, transportation corridors, and surface-water impoundments;

(G) reducing losses from landslides and other ground failures;

(H) mitigating effects of coastal and stream erosion;

(I) siting of critical facilities; and

(J) basic earth-science research;

(3) Federal agencies, State and local governments, private industry, and the general public depend on the information provided by geologic maps to determine the extent of potential environmental damage before embarking on projects that could lead to preventable, costly environmental problems or litigation;

(4) the combined capabilities of State, Federal, and academic groups to provide geologic mapping are not sufficient to meet the present and future needs of the United States for national security, environmental protection, and energy self-sufficiency of the Nation;

(5) States are willing to contribute 50 percent of the funding necessary to complete the mapping of the geology within the State;

(6) the lack of proper geologic maps has led to the poor design of such structures as dams and waste-disposal facilities;

(7) geologic maps have proven indispensable in the search for needed fossil-fuel and mineral resources; and

(8) a comprehensive nationwide program of geologic mapping is required in order to systematically build the Nation's geologic-map data base at a pace that responds to increasing demand.

(b) Purpose

The purpose of this Act is to expedite the production of a geologic-map data base for the Nation, to be located within the United States Geological Survey, which can be applied to land-use management, assessment, and utilization, conservation of natural resources, groundwater management, and environmental protection.

§ 31a. Findings [provisions added by the National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997]

Congress finds that--

(1) in enacting the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992 (43 U.S.C. 31a et seq.), Congress found, among other things, that--

(A) during the 2 decades preceding enactment of that Act [enacted May 18, 1992], the production of geologic maps had been drastically curtailed;

(B) geologic maps are the primary data base for virtually all applied and basic earth-science investigations;

(C) Federal agencies, State and local governments, private industry, and the general public depend on the information provided by geologic maps to determine the extent of potential environmental damage before embarking on projects that could lead to preventable, costly environmental problems or litigation;

(D) the lack of proper geologic maps has led to the poor design of such structures as dams and waste-disposal facilities;

(E) geologic maps have proven indispensable in the search for needed fossil fuel and mineral resources; and

(F) a comprehensive nationwide program of geologic mapping is required in order to systematically build the Nation's geologic-map data base at a pace that responds to increasing demand;

(2) the geologic mapping program called for by that Act has not been fully implemented; and

(3) it is time for this important program to be fully implemented.

§ 31b. Definitions

In this Act:

(1) Advisory committee -- The term "advisory committee" means the advisory committee established under section 5 [43 USCS § 31d].

(2) Association -- The term "Association" means the Association of American State Geologists.

(3) Director -- The term "Director" means the Director of the United States Geological Survey.

(4) Geologic mapping program -- The term "geologic mapping program" means the National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program established by section 4(a) [43 USCS § 31c(a)].

(5) Secretary -- The term "Secretary" means the Secretary of the Interior.

(6) State -- The term "State" includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Virgin Islands.

(7) Survey -- The term "Survey" means the United States Geological Survey.

§ 31c. Geologic Mapping Program

(a) Establishment. --

(1) In general -- There is established a national cooperative geologic mapping program between the United States Geological Survey and the State geological surveys, acting through the Association.

(2) Design, development, and administration. The cooperative geologic mapping program shall be--

(A) designed and administered to achieve the objectives set forth in subsection (c);

(B) developed in consultation with the advisory committee; and

(b) Responsibilities of the Survey. --

(1) Lead agency -- The Survey shall be the lead Federal agency responsible for planning, developing priorities, coordinating, and managing the geologic mapping program. In carrying out this paragraph, the Secretary, acting through the Director, shall--

(A) develop a geologic mapping program implementation plan in accordance with section 6 [43 USCS § 31e], which plan shall be submitted to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate within 300 days after the date of enactment of the National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997 [enacted Aug. 5, 1997];

(B) appoint, with the advice and consultation of the Association, the advisory committee within 90 days after the date of enactment of the National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997 [enacted Aug. 5, 1997] in accordance with section 5 [43 USCS § 31d]; and

(C) within 210 days after the date of enactment of the National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997 [enacted Aug. 5, 1997], submit a report to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the United States Senate and to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives identifying--

(i) how the Survey and the Association will coordinate the development and implementation of the geologic mapping program;

(ii) how the Survey and the Association will establish goals, mapping priorities, and target dates for implementation of the geologic mapping program; and

(iii) how long-term staffing plans for the various components of the geologic mapping program will lead to successful implementation of the geologic mapping program.

(2) Responsibilities of the Secretary -- In addition to paragraph (1), the Secretary, acting through the Director, shall be responsible for developing, as soon as practicable--

(A) in cooperation with the Association, other Federal and State agencies, public and private sector organizations and academia, the geologic-map data base; and

(B) maps and mapping techniques which achieve the objectives specified in subsection (c).

(c) Program objectives. --

The objectives of the geologic mapping program shall include--

(1) determining the Nation's geologic framework through systematic development of geologic maps at scales appropriate to the geologic setting and the perceived applications, such maps to be contributed to the national geologic map data base;

(2) development of a complementary national geophysical-map data base, geochemical-map data base, and a geochronologic and paleontologic data base that provide value-added descriptive and interpretative information to the geologic-map data base;

(3) application of cost-effective mapping techniques that assemble, produce, translate and disseminate geologic-map information and that render such information of greater application and benefit to the public; and

(4) development of public awareness of the role and application of geologic-map information to the resolution of national issues of land use management.

(d) Program components. --

The geologic mapping program shall include the following components:

(1) Federal component. -- A Federal geologic mapping component, whose objective shall be determining the geologic framework of areas determined to be vital to the economic, social, or scientific welfare of the Nation. Mapping priorities shall be based on--

(A) national requirements for geologic-map information in areas of multiple-issue need or areas of compelling single-issue need; and

(B) national requirements for geologic-map information in areas where mapping is required to solve critical earth-science problems.

(2) Support component. -- A geologic mapping support component, whose objective shall be providing interdisciplinary support for the Federal Geologic Mapping Component. Representative categories of interdisciplinary support shall include--

(A) establishment of a national geologic-map data base, established pursuant to section 7 [43 USCS § 31f];

(B) studies that lead to the implementation of cost-effective digital methods for the acquisition, compilation, analysis, cartographic production, and dissemination of geologic-map information;

(C) paleontologic investigations that provide information critical to understanding the age and depositional environment of fossil-bearing geologic-map units, which investigations shall be contributed to a national paleontologic data base;

(D) geochronologic and isotopic investigations that--

(i) provide radiometric age dates for geologic-map units; and

(ii) fingerprint the geothermometry, geobarometry, and alteration history of geologic-map units, which investigations shall be contributed to a national geochronologic data base;

(E) geophysical investigations that assist in delineating and mapping the physical characteristics and three-dimensional distribution of geologic materials and geologic structures, which investigations shall be contributed to a national geophysical-map data base; and

(F) geochemical investigations and analytical operations that characterize the major- and minor-element composition of geologic-map units, and that lead to the recognition of stable and anomalous geochemical signatures for geologic terrains, which investigations shall be contributed to a national geochemical-map data base.

(3) State component. -- A State geologic mapping component, whose objective shall be determining the geologic framework of areas that the State geological surveys determine to be vital to the economic, social, or scientific welfare of individual States. Mapping priorities shall be determined by multirepresentational State panels and shall be integrated with national priorities. Federal funding for the State component shall be matched on a one-to-one basis with non-Federal funds.

(4) Education component. -- A geologic mapping education component--(A) the objectives of which shall be--

(i) to develop the academic programs that teach earth-science students the fundamental principles of geologic mapping and field analysis; and

(ii) to provide for broad education in geologic mapping and field analysis through support of field studies;

(B) investigations under which shall be integrated with the other mapping components of the geologic mapping program and shall respond to priorities identified for those components; and

(C) Federal funding for which shall be matched by non-Federal sources on a 1-to-1 basis.

(a) Establishment.

(1) In general. -- There shall be established a 10-member geologic mapping advisory committee to advise the Director on planning and implementation of the geologic mapping program.

(2) Members ex officio. -- Federal agency members shall include the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency or a designee, the Secretary of Energy or a designee, the Secretary of Agriculture or a designee, and the Assistant to the President for Science and Technology or a designee.

(3) Appointed members. -- Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of the National Geologic Mapping Reauthorization Act of 1997 [enacted Aug. 5, 1997], in consultation with the Association, the Secretary shall appoint to the advisory committee two representatives from the Survey (including the Chief Geologist, as Chairman), two representatives from the State geological surveys, one representative from academia, and one representative from the private sector.

(b) Duties. --

(1) review and critique the draft implementation plan prepared by the Director pursuant to section 6 [43 USCS § 31e];

(2) review the scientific progress of the geologic mapping program; and

(3) submit an annual report to the Secretary that evaluates the progress of the Federal, State, and university mapping activities and evaluates the progress made toward fulfilling the purposes of this Act.

§ 31e. Geologic Mapping Program Implementation Plan

The Secretary, acting through the Director, shall, with the advice and review of the advisory committee, prepare an implementation plan for the geologic mapping program. The plan shall identify the overall management structure and operation of the geologic mapping program and shall provide for--

(1) the role of the Survey in its capacity as overall management lead, including the responsibility for developing the national cooperative geologic mapping program that meets Federal needs while simultaneously fostering State needs;

(2) the responsibilities accruing to the State geological surveys, with particular emphasis on mechanisms that incorporate their needs, missions, capabilities, and requirements into the nationwide geologic mapping program;

(3) mechanisms for identifying short- and long-term priorities for each component of the geologic mapping program, including--

(A) for the Federal geologic mapping component, a priority-setting mechanism that responds both to (i) Federal mission requirements for geologic-map information, and (ii) critical scientific problems that require geologic-map control for their resolution;

(B) for the geologic mapping support component, a strong interdisciplinary research program plan in isotopic and paleontologic geochronology, geophysical mapping, and process studies to provide data to and interpret results from geologic mapping;

(C) for the State geologic mapping component, a priority-setting mechanism that responds to--

(i) specific intrastate needs for geologic-map information; and

(ii) interstate needs shared by adjacent entities that have common requirements; and

(D) for the geologic mapping education component, a priority-setting mechanism that responds to requirements for geologic-map information that are driven by Federal and State mission requirements;

(4) a mechanism for adopting scientific and technical mapping standards for preparing and publishing general- purpose and special-purpose geologic maps to--

(A) ensure uniformity of cartographic and scientific conventions; and

(B) provide a basis for judgment as to the comparability and quality of map products; and

(5) a mechanism for monitoring the inventory of published and current mapping investigations nationwide in order to facilitate planning and information exchange and to avoid redundancy.

§ 31f. National Geologic-Map Data Base

(a) Establishment

The Survey shall establish a national geologic-map data base. Such data base shall be a national archive that includes all maps developed pursuant to this Act, the data bases developed pursuant to the investigations under sections (4)(d)(2) (C), (D), (E), and (F) [43 USCS § 31c(d)(2)(C)-(F)], and other maps and data as the Survey deems appropriate.

(b) Standardization

(1) In general. -- Geologic maps contributed to the national archives shall have format, symbols, and technical attributes that adhere to standards so that archival information can be accessed, exchanged, and compared efficiently and accurately, as required by Executive Order 12906 (59 Fed. Reg. 17,671 (1994)) [43 USCS § 1457 note], which established the National Spatial Data Infrastructure.

(2) Development of standards. -- Entities that contribute geologic maps to the national archives shall develop the standards described in paragraph (1) in cooperation with the Federal Geographic Data Committee, which is charged with standards development and other data coordination activities as described in Office of Management and Budget revised Circular A-16.

§ 31g. Annual Report

The Secretary shall, within 90 days after the end of each fiscal year, submit an annual report to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate describing the status of the nationwide geologic mapping program and describing and evaluating the progress achieved during the preceding fiscal year in developing the national geologic-map data base. Each report shall include any recommendations for legislative or other action as the Secretary deems necessary and appropriate to fulfill the purposes of this Act.

§ 31h. Authorization of Appropriations

(a) In general. --

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out the national cooperative geologic mapping program under this Act--

(1) $26,000,000 for fiscal year 1998; (2)$28,000,000 for fiscal year 1999; and

(3) \$30,000,000 for fiscal year 2000.

(b) Allocation of appropriated funds. --

(1) In general. -- Of the amount of funds that are appropriated under subsection (a) for any fiscal year up to the amount that is equal to the amount appropriated to carry out the national cooperative geologic mapping program for fiscal year 1996--

(A) not less than 20 percent shall be allocated to State mapping activities; and

(B) not less than 2 percent shall be allocated to educational mapping activities.

(2) Increased appropriations. -- Of the amount of funds that are appropriated under subsection (a) for any fiscal year up to the amount that exceeds the amount appropriated to carry out the national cooperative geologic mapping program for fiscal year 1996--(A) for fiscal year 1998--

(i) 75 percent shall be allocated for Federal mapping and support mapping activities;

(ii) 23 percent shall be allocated for State mapping activities; and

(iii) 2 percent shall be allocated for educational mapping activities;

(B) for fiscal year 1999 --

(i) 74 percent shall be allocated for Federal mapping and support mapping activities;

(ii) 24 percent shall be allocated for State mapping activities; and

(iii) 2 percent shall be allocated for educational mapping activities; and

(C) for fiscal year 2000--

(i) 73 percent shall be allocated for Federal mapping and support mapping activities;

(ii) 25 percent shall be allocated for State mapping activities; and

(iii) 2 percent shall be allocated for educational mapping activities.