The Secretary shall, to the full extent of his authority, assess the oil, gas, and other mineral potential on all public lands in the State of Alaska in order to expand the data base with respect to the mineral potential of such lands. The mineral assessment program may include, but shall not be limited to, techniques such as side-looking radar imagery and, on public lands other than such lands within the national park system, core and test drilling for geologic information, notwithstanding any restriction on such drilling under the Wilderness Act [16
et seq.]. For purposes of this Act, core and test drilling means the extraction by drilling of subsurface geologic samples in order to assess the metalliferous or other mineral values of geologic terrain, but shall not be construed as including exploratory drilling of oil and gas test wells. To the maximum extent practicable, the Secretary shall consult and exchange information with the State of Alaska regarding the responsibilities of the Secretary under this section and similar programs undertaken by the State. In order to carry out mineral assessments authorized under this or any other law, including but not limited to the National Uranium Resource Evaluation program, the Secretary shall allow for access by air for assessment activities permitted in this subsection to all public lands involved in such study. He shall consult with the Secretary of Energy and heads of other Federal agencies carrying out such programs, to determine such reasonable requirements as may be necessary to protect the resources of such area, including fish and wildlife. Such requirements may provide that access will not occur during nesting, calving, spawning or such other times as fish and wildlife in the specific area may be especially vulnerable to such activities. The Secretary is authorized to enter into contracts with public or private entities to carry out all or any portion of the mineral assessment program. This section shall not apply to the lands described in section
of this title.