16 U.S. Code § 1642 - Investigations, experiments, tests, and other activities
(a) Authorization; scope and purposes of activities
The Secretary is authorized to conduct, support, and cooperate in investigations, experiments, tests, and other activities the Secretary deems necessary to obtain, analyze, develop, demonstrate, and disseminate scientific information about protecting, managing, and utilizing forest and rangeland renewable resources in rural, suburban, and urban areas. The activities conducted, supported, or cooperated in by the Secretary under this subchapter shall include, but not be limited to, the five major areas of renewable resource research identified in paragraphs (1) through (5) of this subsection.
(1) Renewable resource management research shall include, as appropriate, research activities related to managing, reproducing, planting, and growing vegetation on forests and rangelands for timber, forage, water, fish and wildlife, esthetics, recreation, wilderness, energy production, activities related to energy conservation, and other purposes, including activities for encouraging improved reforestation of forest lands from which timber has been harvested; determining the role of forest and rangeland management in the productive use of forests and rangelands, in diversified agriculture, and in mining, transportation, and other industries; and developing alternatives for the management of forests and rangelands that will make possible the most effective use of their multiple products and services.
(2) Renewable resource environmental research shall include, as appropriate, research activities related to understanding and managing surface and subsurface water flow, preventing and controlling erosion, and restoring damaged or disturbed soils on forest and rangeland watersheds; maintaining and improving wildlife and fish habitats; managing vegetation to reduce air and water pollution, provide amenities, and for other purposes; and understanding, predicting, and modifying weather, climatic, and other environmental conditions that affect the protection and management of forests and rangelands.
(3) Renewable resource protection research shall include, as appropriate, research activities related to protecting vegetation and other forest and rangeland resources, including threatened and endangered flora and fauna, as well as wood and wood products in storage or use, from fires, insects, diseases, noxious plants, animals, air pollutants, and other agents through biological, chemical, and mechanical control methods and systems; and protecting people, natural resources, and property from fires in rural areas.
(4) Renewable resource utilization research shall include, as appropriate, research activities related to harvesting, transporting, processing, marketing, distributing, and utilizing wood and other materials derived from forest and rangeland renewable resources; recycling and fully utilizing wood fiber; producing and conserving energy; and testing forest products, including necessary fieldwork associated therewith.
(b) Development of periodic Renewable Resource Assessment through survey and analysis of conditions; implementation; authorization of appropriations
(1) To ensure the availability of adequate data and scientific information for development of the periodic Renewable Resource Assessment provided for in section 1601 of this title, the Secretary of Agriculture shall make and keep current a comprehensive survey and analysis of the present and prospective conditions of and requirements for renewable resources of the forests and rangelands of the United States and of the supplies of such renewable resources, including a determination of the present and potential productivity of the land, and of such other facts as may be necessary and useful in the determination of ways and means needed to balance the demand for and supply of these renewable resources, benefits, and uses in meeting the needs of the people of the United States. The Secretary shall conduct the survey and analysis under such plans as the Secretary may determine to be fair and equitable, and cooperate with appropriate officials of each State and, either through them or directly, with private or other entities.
(c) Program of research and study relative to health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems; advisory committee; reports
(1) The Secretary, acting through the United States Forest Service, shall establish not later than 180 days after October 24, 1988, a 10-year program (hereinafter in this subsection referred to as the “Program”) to—
(A) increase the frequency of forest inventories in matters that relate to atmospheric pollution and conduct such surveys as are necessary to monitor long-term trends in the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems;
(B) determine the scope of the decline in the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems;
(C) accelerate and expand existing research efforts (including basic forest ecosystem research) to evaluate the effects of atmospheric pollutants on forest ecosystems and their role in the decline in domestic forest health and productivity;
(D) study the relationship between atmospheric pollution and other climatological, chemical, physical, and biological factors that may affect the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems;
(E) develop recommendations for solving or mitigating problems related to the effects of atmospheric pollution on the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems;
(F) foster cooperation among Federal, State, and private researchers and encourage the exchange of scientific information on the effects of atmospheric pollutants on forest ecosystems among the United States, Canada, European nations, and other nations;
(G) support the long-term funding of research programs and related efforts to determine the causes of declines in the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems and the effects of atmospheric pollutants on the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems; and
(2) The Secretary shall establish a committee to advise the Secretary in developing and carrying out the Program, which shall be composed of scientists with training and experience in various disciplines, including atmospheric, ecological, and biological sciences. Such scientists shall be selected from among individuals who are actively performing research for Federal or State agencies or for private industries, institutions, or organizations.
(3) The Secretary shall coordinate the Program with existing research efforts of Federal and State agencies and private industries, institutions, or organizations.
(4) The Secretary shall submit to the President and to Congress the following reports:
(A) Not less than 30 days before establishing the Program, the Secretary shall submit an initial program report—
(i) discussing existing information about declining health and productivity of forest ecosystems on public and private lands in North America and Europe;
(ii) outlining the findings and status of all current research and monitoring efforts in North America and Europe on the causes and effects of atmospheric pollution on the health and productivity of forest ecosystems;
(B) Not later than January 15, 1990, and January 15 of each year thereafter, during which the Program is in operation following the year in which the initial program report is submitted, the Secretary shall submit an annual report—
(i) updating information about declining health and productivity of forest ecosystems on public and private lands in North America and Europe;
(ii) updating the findings and status of all current research and monitoring efforts in North America and Europe on the causes and effects of atmospheric pollution on the health and productivity of forest ecosystems, including efforts conducted under the Program;
(iii) recommending additional research and monitoring efforts to be undertaken under the Program to determine the effects of atmospheric pollution on the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems; and
(C) Not later than 10 years after the date on which the initial program report is submitted, the Secretary shall submit a final report—
(i) reviewing existing information about declining health and productivity of forest ecosystems on public and private lands in North America and Europe;
(ii) reviewing the nature and findings of all research and monitoring efforts conducted under the Program and any other relevant research and monitoring efforts related to the effects of atmospheric pollution on forest ecosystem; and
(d) High priority forestry and rangeland research and education
(1) In general
The Secretary may conduct, support, and cooperate in forestry and rangeland research and education that is of the highest priority to the United States and to users of public and private forest land and rangeland in the United States.
The research and education priorities include the following:
(3) Northeastern States research cooperative
At the request of the Governor of the State of Maine, New Hampshire, New York, or Vermont, the Secretary may cooperate with the northeastern States of New Hampshire, New York, Maine, and Vermont, land-grant colleges and universities of those States, natural resources and forestry schools of those States, other Federal agencies, and other interested persons in those States to coordinate and improve ecological and economic research relating to agricultural research, extension, and education, including—
(A) research on ecosystem health, forest management, product development, economics, and related fields;
(B) research to assist those States and landowners in those States to achieve sustainable forest management;
(C) technology transfer to the wood products industry of technologies that promote efficient processing, pollution prevention, and energy conservation;
(D) dissemination of existing and new information to landowners, public and private resource managers, State forest citizen advisory committees, and the general public through professional associations, publications, and other information clearinghouse activities; and
(E) analysis of strategies for the protection of areas of outstanding ecological significance or high biological diversity, and strategies for the provision of important recreational opportunities and traditional uses, including strategies for areas identified through State land conservation planning processes.
(e) Forest inventory and analysis
(1) Program required
In compliance with other applicable provisions of law, the Secretary shall establish a program to inventory and analyze, in a timely manner, public and private forests and their resources in the United States.
(2) Annual State inventory
(A) In general
Not later than the end of each full fiscal year beginning after June 23, 1998, the Secretary shall prepare for each State, in cooperation with the State forester for the State, an inventory of forests and their resources in the State.
(B) Sample plots
For purposes of preparing the inventory for a State, the Secretary shall measure annually 20 percent of all sample plots that are included in the inventory program for that State.
(3) 5-year reports
Not more often than every 5 full fiscal years after June 23, 1998, the Secretary shall prepare, publish, and make available to the public a report, prepared in cooperation with State foresters, that—
(A) contains a description of each State inventory of forests and their resources, incorporating all sample plot measurements conducted during the 5 years covered by the report;
(B) displays and analyzes on a nationwide basis the results of the annual reports required by paragraph (2); and
(4) National standards and definitions
To ensure uniform and consistent data collection for all forest land that is publicly or privately owned and for each State, the Secretary shall develop, in consultation with State foresters and Federal land management agencies not under the jurisdiction of the Secretary, and publish national standards and definitions to be applied in inventorying and analyzing forests and their resources under this subsection. The standards shall include a core set of variables to be measured on all sample plots under paragraph (2) and a standard set of tables to be included in the reports under paragraph (3).
(5) Protection for private property rights
The Secretary shall obtain authorization from property owners prior to collecting data from sample plots located on private property pursuant to paragraphs (2) and (3).
(6) Strategic plan
Not later than 180 days after June 23, 1998, the Secretary shall prepare and submit to Congress a strategic plan to implement and carry out this subsection, including the annual updates required by paragraph (2) and the reports required by paragraph (3), that shall describe in detail—
(A) the financial resources required to implement and carry out this subsection, including the identification of any resources required in excess of the amounts provided for forest inventorying and analysis in recent appropriations Acts;
(B) the personnel necessary to implement and carry out this subsection, including any personnel in addition to personnel currently performing inventorying and analysis functions;
(C) the organization and procedures necessary to implement and carry out this subsection, including proposed coordination with Federal land management agencies and State foresters;
(D) the schedules for annual sample plot measurements in each State inventory required by paragraph (2) within the first 5-year interval after June 23, 1998;
(E) the core set of variables to be measured in each sample plot under paragraph (2) and the standard set of tables to be used in each State and national report under paragraph (3); and
(F) the process for employing, in coordination with the Secretary of Energy and the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, remote sensing, global positioning systems, and other advanced technologies to carry out this subsection, and the subsequent use of the technologies.
Source(Pub. L. 95–307, § 3,June 30, 1978, 92 Stat. 353; Pub. L. 96–294, title II, § 254,June 30, 1980, 94 Stat. 707; Pub. L. 100–521, § 3,Oct. 24, 1988, 102 Stat. 2601; Pub. L. 101–624, title XII, § 1241(a),Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3544; Pub. L. 105–185, title II, § 253(b), (c),June 23, 1998, 112 Stat. 559; Pub. L. 105–277, div. A, § 101(a) [title VII, § 753(a)], Oct. 21, 1998, 112 Stat. 2681, 2681–32.)
References in Text
The Federal revenue codes, referred to in subsec. (d)(2), are classified generally to Title 26, Internal Revenue Code.
1998—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 105–185, § 253(b), added subsec. (d) and struck out former subsec. (d) which read as follows: “The Secretary is authorized to conduct, support, and cooperate in studies and other activities the Secretary deems necessary to—
“(1) evaluate renewable resource management problems associated with urban-forest interface;
“(2) assess effects of changes in Federal revenue codes on private forest management and investment; and
“(3) develop improved delivery systems for information and technical assistance provided to private landowners.”
Subsec. (d)(3). Pub. L. 105–277substituted “At the request of the Governor of the State of Maine, New Hampshire, New York, or Vermont, the Secretary” for “The Secretary”.
Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 105–185, § 253(c), added subsec. (e).
1990—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 101–624, § 1241(a)(1), inserted “, including activities for encouraging improved reforestation of forest lands from which timber has been harvested” after “purposes”.
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 101–624, § 1241(a)(2), designated existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).
Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 101–624, § 1241(a)(3), added subsec. (d).
1988—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 100–521added subsec. (c).
1980—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 96–294, § 254(1), inserted applicability to energy production and energy conservation activities.
Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 96–294, § 254(2), inserted applicability to producing and conserving energy.
Effective Date of 1998 Amendment
Amendment by Pub. L. 105–277effective June 23, 1998, see section 101 (a) [title VII, § 753(f)] of Pub. L. 105–277, set out as a note under section 343 of Title 7, Agriculture.
Revision of Strategic Plan for Forest Inventory and Analysis
“(a) Revision Required.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Feb. 7, 2014], the Secretary [of Agriculture] shall revise the strategic plan for forest inventory and analysis initially prepared pursuant to section 3(e) of the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Research Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. 1642 (e)) to address the requirements imposed by subsection (b).
“(b) Elements of Revised Strategic Plan.—In revising the strategic plan, the Secretary shall describe in detail the organization, procedures, and funding needed to achieve each of the following:
“(1) Complete the transition to a fully annualized forest inventory program and include inventory and analysis of interior Alaska.
“(2) Implement an annualized inventory of trees in urban settings, including the status and trends of trees and forests, and assessments of their ecosystem services, values, health, and risk to pests and diseases.
“(3) Report information on renewable biomass supplies and carbon stocks at the local, State, regional, and national level, including by ownership type.
“(4) Engage State foresters and other users of information from the forest inventory and analysis in reevaluating the list of core data variables collected on forest inventory and analysis plots with an emphasis on demonstrated need.
“(5) Improve the timeliness of the timber product output program and accessibility of the annualized information on that database.
“(6) Foster greater cooperation among the forest inventory and analysis program, research station leaders, and State foresters and other users of information from the forest inventory and analysis.
“(7) Promote availability of and access to non-Federal resources to improve information analysis and information management.
“(8) Collaborate with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and United States Geological Survey to integrate remote sensing, spatial analysis techniques, and other new technologies in the forest inventory and analysis program.
“(9) Understand and report on changes in land cover and use.
“(10) Expand existing programs to promote sustainable forest stewardship through increased understanding, in partnership with other Federal agencies, of the over 10,000,000 family forest owners, their demographics, and the barriers to forest stewardship.
“(11) Implement procedures to improve the statistical precision of estimates at the sub-State level.
“(c) Submission of Revised Strategic Plan.—The Secretary shall submit the revised strategic plan to the Committee on Agriculture of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry of the Senate.”
Southern Forest Regeneration Program
“(a) Establishment.—The Secretary of Agriculture shall make a grant to a State for the establishment, within such State, of a center, to be known as the ‘Southern Forest Regeneration Center’ (hereafter referred to in this section as the ‘Center’), to study forest regeneration problems and forest productivity in the southern region of the United States.
“(b) Duties of Center.—The Center shall study forest regeneration problems and forest productivity in the southern region of the United States, including—
“(1) nursery management concerns that will lead to improved seedling quality;
“(2) forest management practices that account for environmental stresses; and
“(3) the development of low-cost forest regeneration methods that provide options for wood products, species diversity, wildlife habitat, and production of clean air and water.
“(c) Establishment of Other Programs.—The Secretary of Agriculture may establish other programs in other regions of the United States, or a comprehensive National program, to carry out the purposes of this section as the Secretary determines appropriate.
“(d) Authorization of Appropriations.—There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out this section.”
Semiarid Agroforestry Research Center
“(a) Semiarid Agroforestry Research, Development, and Demonstration Center.—The Secretary of Agriculture shall establish at the Forestry Sciences Laboratory of the United States Forest Service, in Lincoln, Nebraska, a Semiarid Agroforestry Research, Development, and Demonstration Center (hereafter referred to in this section as the ‘Center’) and appoint a Director to manage and coordinate the program established at the Center under subsection (b).
“(b) Program.—The Secretary shall establish a program at the Center and seek the participation of Federal or State governmental entities, land-grant colleges or universities, State agricultural experiment stations, State and private foresters, the National Arbor Day Foundation, and other nonprofit foundations in such program to conduct or assist research, investigations, studies, and surveys to—
“(1) develop sustainable agroforestry systems on semiarid lands that minimize topsoil loss and water contamination and stabilize or enhance crop productivity;
“(2) adapt, demonstrate, document, and model the effectiveness of agroforestry systems under different farming systems and soil or climate conditions;
“(3) develop dual use agroforestry systems compatible with paragraphs (1) and (2) which would provide high-value forestry products for commercial sale from semiarid land;
“(4) develop and improve the drought and pest resistance characteristics of trees for conservation forestry and agroforestry applications in semiarid regions, including the introduction and breeding of trees suited for the Great Plains region of the United States;
“(5) develop technology transfer programs that increase farmer and public acceptance of sustainable agroforestry systems;
“(6) develop improved windbreak and shelterbelt technologies for drought preparedness, soil and water conservation, environmental quality, and biological diversity on semiarid lands;
“(7) develop technical and economic concepts for sustainable agroforestry on semiarid lands, including the conduct of economic analyses of the costs and benefits of agroforestry systems and the development of models to predict the economic benefits under soil or climate conditions;
“(8) provide international leadership in the development and exchange of agroforestry practices on semiarid lands worldwide;
“(9) support research on the effects of agroforestry systems on semiarid lands in mitigating nonpoint source water pollution;
“(10) support research on the design, establishment, and maintenance of tree and shrub plantings to regulate the deposition of snow along roadways; and
“(11) conduct sociological, demographic, and economic studies as needed to develop strategies for increasing the use of forestry conservation and agroforestry practices.
“(c) Information Collection and Dissemination.—The Secretary shall establish at the Center a program, to be known as the National Clearinghouse on Agroforestry Conservation and Promotion to—
“(1) collect, analyze, and disseminate information on agroforestry conservation technologies and practices; and
“(2) promote the use of such information by landowners and those organizations associated with forestry and tree promotion.
“(d) Authorization of Appropriations.—There are authorized to be appropriated $5,000,000 annually to carry out this section.”
Forest Ecosystems and Atmospheric Pollution Research; Congressional Findings
“(1) the health and productivity of forests in certain regions of the United States are declining;
“(2) there is a special concern about the decline of certain hardwood species, particularly sugar maples and oaks, in the eastern United States and the effects of atmospheric pollutants on the health and productivity of these forests;
“(3) declines in the productivity of certain commercially important Southern pine species have been measured;
“(4) existing research indicates that atmospheric pollution, including ozone, acidic deposition, and heavy metals, may contribute to this decline;
“(5) there is an urgent need to expand and better coordinate existing Federal, State, and private research, including research by private industry, to determine the cause of changes in the health and productivity of domestic forest ecosystems and to monitor and evaluate the effects of atmospheric pollutants on such ecosystems; and
“(6) such research and monitoring should not impede efforts to control atmospheric pollutants.”