42 U.S. Code § 16371 - Program authority
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(a) In general
The Secretary shall carry out a program under this part of research, development, demonstration, and commercial application of technologies for ultra-deepwater and unconventional natural gas and other petroleum resource exploration and production, including addressing the technology challenges for small producers, safe operations, and environmental mitigation (including reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and sequestration of carbon).
(b) Program elements
The program under this part shall address the following areas, including improving safety and minimizing environmental impacts of activities within each area:
(1) Ultra-deepwater architecture and technology, including drilling to formations in the Outer Continental Shelf to depths greater than 15,000 feet.
(c) Limitation on location of field activities
Field activities under the program under this part shall be carried out only—
(A) areas in the territorial waters of the United States not under any Outer Continental Shelf moratorium as of September 30, 2002;
(B) areas onshore in the United States on public land administered by the Secretary of the Interior available for oil and gas leasing, where consistent with applicable law and land use plans; and
(d) Activities at the National Energy Technology Laboratory
The Secretary, through the National Energy Technology Laboratory, shall carry out a program of research and other activities complementary to and supportive of the research programs under subsection (b).