« PreviousContinue »
Continental Shelf receipts are included in the section on undistributed offsetting receipts. The administration proposes that grazing fees gradually be increased to attain fair market value in 1980. Outlays for the Bureau of Land Management are proposed to increase from $362 million in 1978 to $382 million in 1979. This increase will support increased data collection needed for better range management decisions, and also finance the new land-use decisionmaking and enforcement responsibilities required by the 1976 Federal Land Policy and Management Act. Additional personnel will be available for land management activities from the Young Adult Conservation Corps. Funds are also requested for environmental baseline studies to the extent needed for environmental impact statements related to Outer Continental Shelf lease determinations. Five lease sales on the Shelf are planned in 1979. The budget recommends oil-development related studies of the Alaskan marine environment, for which relatively little ecological information currently exists. Finally, funding is proposed for studies of the environmental effects of transporting oil and natural gas from offshore production facilities.
Surface mining reclamation.—The new Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement was established in 1977. Its two program goals are to prevent the permanent degradation of land due to surface mining of coal, and to reclaim land previously damaged by such mining. Total outlays are estimated to be $48 million in 1978 and $70 million in 1979.
The first goal will be accomplished through the development and enforcement of regulations that set standards for surface mining of coal. The program is designed to have States assume responsibility for enforcement. As an incentive for States to assume this responsibility, the budget proposes that the Federal Government provide several types of aid, including grants and technical assistance. The Office will have an oversight role in those States that assume regulatory responsibility, and will have full responsibility for enforcement in States that do not exercise this option.
Top priority in reclamation will be given to developing an inventory of lands requiring reclamation to ensure that the most urgent problems are addressed first with regard to the second goal. Budget authority of $71 million is requested to conduct such an inventory and to begin projects that remedy the most serious reclamation problems. These projects will be undertaken by the Office of Surface Mining, the Soil Conservation Service of the Department of Agriculture, and by those States that have approved regulatory programs.
Conservation of agricultural lands.-Several programs contribute to this mission which is to protect and maintain the long-term productive capacity of the Nation's rural lands through technical and financial assistance to conservation districts, State and local governments, and private landowners.
The decrease in outlays from $685 million in 1978 to $432 million in 1979 reflects program reforms including the consolidation of the great plains program with the agricultural conservation program. Resource conservation and development program funds will be directed toward completion of ongoing projects rather than initiating new ones. The 1979 budget stresses technical assistance, data collection, and dissemination. Cost sharing assistance will be directed toward the alleviation of non-point-source pollution, the treatment of critically eroding lands, and conservation measures which provide long-term benefits in contrast to measures which provide short-term benefits or production enhancement. This emphasis on enduring practices should produce more effective use of all funds (Federal, State, local, and private) for conservation purposes.
Other conservation and land management.—The Department of Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration promotes the rational use and conservation of our coastal areas by helping States and territories develop and carry out coastal zone management programs. It also provides grants for the construction of public facilities required as a result of coastal related energy development activities. This agency is also responsible for designating sanctuaries to protect important marine and estuarine areas.
Budget authority for these programs is proposed to increase from $51 million in 1978 to $57 million in 1979. In 1979, all eligible States and territories will receive Federal grants for the planning and administration of their coastal zone management programs. Increased funding for the coastal energy impact formula grant program is requested to help those States affected by the anticipated expansion of Outer Continental Shelf oil and gas developments. Expansion of the national marine and estuarine sanctuaries program is also planned.
Recreational resources.—To accomplish this mission, the Federal Government acquires and operates national parks, recreation areas, historic sites, wild and scenic rivers, fish hatcheries, and wildlife refuges. Facilities are provided for visitors and the production of fish and wildlife. Grants and technical assistance are provided to States for planning, acquiring, developing, and managing areas for recreation, fish and wildlife conservation, and the preservation of historic places. Research on these subjects is also conducted.
260-000 O - 78 - 9
Outlays for these programs are estimated to increase to $1.5 billion in 1979 as compared to $1.3 billion in 1978 and $1.0 billion in 1977.
National heritage program.—This is a new program proposed by the administration to conserve the best of the Nation's natural and historic heritage. It will be financed through the historic preservation fund and the land and water conservation fund. States and local governments will be encouraged through grants and technical assistance to select, set priorities, and preserve outstanding and unique areas of scenic, wild, geologic, ecological, or historic importance. States will make an inventory of such places and nominate them for addition to national lists to be compiled by the Department of the Interior. Federal development programs will not be allowed to affect adversely those listed places determined to be of national significance.
The program will be administered by the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation. The Bureau will have transferred to it the historic preservation functions of the National Park Service.
Land and water conservation fund.—This fund provides grants to States for recreational land acquisition and development. It also funds the Federal purchase of recreational lands and the conservation of natural resources such as national parks and endangered species of wildlife. Appropriations for the land and water conservation fund are recommended at a record level of $725 million in budget authority in 1979. This will provide— • $370 million for matching grants to States. Under the national heritage program, for which $64 million is earmarked, land acquisition for preservation purposes will become an additional eligible use of these grant funds. • $347 million for the acquisition of land for parks, wildlife refuges, and recreation areas by four Federal agencies: the National Park Service, the Forest Service, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Bureau of Land Management. This will practically eliminate the backlog of land acquisition at those areas specifically authorized by the Congress for purchase. • $8 million for administering the fund.
Operation of recreation resources.—Under this program diverse activities are conducted necessary to the operation of the national park and wildlife refuge systems, namely providing facilities and services for visitors and managing the natural resources within these areas. In addition, these activities encompass grants, research, and technical assistance in the subjects of recreation, fish and wildlife, and historic preservation. Outlays are estimated to increase to $980 million in 1979 from $670 million in 1977, and $851 million in 1978.
Budget authority of $45 million for the historic preservation fund is recommended in 1979 as psrt of the new nationsl heritsge program. This fundisused for grants to States.
The Fish and Wildlife Service's mission is to manage wildlife refuges, comprising 34 million acres, operate S9 fish hatcheries, conduct research on fish and wildlife. administers program to protect endsngered species, and provide grants to States to assist them in mansging fish and wildlife. Legislation is proposed to increase the price of migratory bird conservation stamps; the receipts are used to acquire migratory bird habitat.
The National Park Service develops, operates, and maintains the National Park System, comprising 294 areas totaling about 3.1 million acres. Total visits to these areas are expected to increase by about 4% to 283 million in 1979. The budget provides operating funds to keep pace with expected increases in workload at the parks,
Other natural resources.—These activities are primarily directed at increasing understanding of the atmosphere, and the Earth's structure and environment. To accomplish this mission, the Geological Survey, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Bureau of Mines operate a wide range of activities.
The Geological Survey conducts national geologic and mineral resources surveys, including the identification of geologic hazards, such as earthquakes; water resources investigations; and topographic surveys and mapping. It also supervises Federal mineral leases and the exploration for petroleum resources in the national petroleum reserve in Alaska; funds for the latter program are included in the energy function. Outlays for the resource programs of the Geological Survey are estimated at $394 million in 1979, increasing from $302 million in 1977 and $373 million in 1978.
Increased levels of funding in 1979 are recommended for oil and natural gas lease sales on the Outer Continental Shelf, studies related to the safe disposal of radioactive wastes, and analyses of regional underground resources of water. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration conducts marine- and atmosphere-related research and environmental monitoring; produces maps and charts for navigation; manages our fisheries resources; protects marine mammals and endangered species; and operates a national system to monitor and predict weather conditions. An increase in budget authority from $627 million in 1978 to $661 million in 1979 is proposed for the operations of this agency. In 1979 it plans to undertake major studies to determine the effects of pollutants, including oilspills, on the marine ecosystem; expand its efforts to manage fisheries within the recently established 200-mile zone; expand efforts to protect endangered species; and improve weather warning and forecasting services. Expanded interagency climate program efforts are proposed with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as the lead agency. Total budget authority requested for the Federal climate program across various agencies is $104 million, an increase of $28 million over 1978. The objective of this program is to develop the ability to understand and anticipate seasonal and long-range climatic fluctuations so that the Nation can better prepare for the effects of climatic anomalies. The Bureau of Mines conducts research and administers various programs to develop and conserve the Nation's mineral resources and to diminish the adverse effects of mining on the environment. Outlays for these programs are estimated to be $128 million in 1979.
Credit programs.-Loans and grants are made to State and local organizations for the construction and rehabilitation of small water resource projects. Loans are also made for the construction of irrigation, municipal, and industrial water distribution systems, which utilize water from Federal reclamation projects. Drought emergency loans made in 1977 and 1978 are not anticipated in 1979.
CREDIT PROGRAMS-NATURAL RESOURCES AND ENVIRONMENT
[In millions of dollars]
Program 1977 1978 1979 actual estimate estimate
Bureau of Reclamation loan program and other:
Net credit outlays------------------------------------ 26 52 16