Bookmark and Share


Federal Register Summary for week of 27 June

    Agriculture

  • Notice of Solicitation of Members to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board

    AGENCY: Research, Education, and Economics, USDA.

    ACTION: Solicitation for membership.


    SUMMARY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App., the United States Department of Agriculture announces solicitation for nominations to fill 8 vacancies on the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board.

    DATES: Deadline for Advisory Board member nominations is July 18, 2014.

    ADDRESSES: The nominee's name, resume, completed Form AD-755, and any letters of support must be submitted via one of the following methods: (1) Email to Michele.esch@usda.gov and Shirley.morgan@ars.usda.gov; or (2) By mail delivery service to Thomas Vilsack, Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250, Attn: NAREEE Advisory Board, Room 332A, Whitten Building.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michele Esch, Executive Director, National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 332A, Whitten Building, Washington, DC 20250-2255, telephone: 202-720-3684; fax: 202- 720-6199; email: michele.esch@ars.usda.gov. Committee Web site: www.nareeeab.ree.usda.gov.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-23/html/2014-14578.htm

  • Energy

  • President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology

    AGENCY: Office of Science, Department of Energy.

    ACTION: Notice of partially-closed meeting.


    SUMMARY: This notice sets forth the schedule and summary agenda for a partially closed meeting of the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), and describes the functions of the Council.

    Notice of this meeting is required under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C. App. 2.

    DATES: July 11, 2014, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

    ADDRESSES: National Academy of Sciences (Lecture Room), 2101 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Information regarding the meeting agenda, time, location, and how to register for the meeting is available on the PCAST Web site at: http://whitehouse.gov/ostp/pcast. A live video webcast and an archive of the webcast after the event are expected to be available at http://whitehouse.gov/ostp/pcast. The archived video will be available within one week of the meeting. Questions about the meeting should be directed to Dr. Ashley Predith by email at: apredith@ostp.eop.gov, or telephone: (202) 456-4444. Please note that public seating for this meeting is limited and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-23/html/2014-14582.htm

  • Environmental Protection Agency

  • Extension of Request for Scientific Views for External Peer Review Draft Aquatic Life Ambient Water Quality Criterion for Selenium--Freshwater 2014

    AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION: Notice; extension of the request for scientific views.


    SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is re-opening the comment period for the external peer review draft aquatic life ambient water quality criterion for selenium announced in a previous notice entitled "External Peer Review Draft Aquatic Life Ambient Water Quality Criterion for Selenium--Freshwater 2014.'' In response to stakeholder requests, the EPA is extending the period of time in which the Agency will accept scientific views for an additional 30 days.

    DATES: Scientific views must be received on or before July 28, 2014. Scientific views postmarked after this date may not receive the same consideration.

    The comment period was originally scheduled to end on June 13, 2014.

    ADDRESSES: Submit your scientific views, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2004-0019, by one of the following methods:

    www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.

    Email: ow-docket@epa.gov. Attention Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW- 2004-0019.

    Mail: EPA Water Docket, Environmental Protection Agency, Mailcode: 2822-IT, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460. Attention Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW-2004-0019. Please include a total of two copies (including references).

    Hand Delivery: EPA Water Docket, EPA Docket Center, William Jefferson Clinton West Building, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20004, Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW-2004-0019. Such deliveries are only accepted during the Docket's normal hours of operation, and special arrangements should be made for deliveries of boxed information.

    Instructions: EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available online at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected through www.regulations.gov or email. The www.regulations.gov Web site is an "anonymous access'' system, which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email comment directly to EPA without going through www.regulations.gov your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses. For additional information about EPA's public docket visit the EPA Docket Center homepage at http://www.epa.gov/epahome/dockets.htm. For additional instructions on submitting comments, go to Section III of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

    Docket: All documents in the docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, will be publicly available only in hard copy. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the EPA-HQ-OW-2004-0019 Docket, EPA/DC, William Jefferson Clinton Building West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the EPA Water Docket is (202) 566-2426.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kathryn Gallagher at U.S. EPA, Office of Water, Health and Ecological Criteria Division (4304T), 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone: (202) 564- 1398; or email: gallagher.kathryn@epa.gov.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-26/html/2014-14995.htm

  • Notification of a Public Teleconference of the Science Advisory Board Environmental Justice Technical Guidance Review Panel

    AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency.

    ACTION: Notice.


    SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office announces a teleconference of the Environmental Justice Technical Guidance (EJTG) Review Panel. A public teleconference will be held to discuss the draft report of the panel.

    DATES: A public teleconference to discuss the draft report of the EJTG review panel will be held on July 22, 2014 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Eastern Time).

    ADDRESSES: The public teleconference will be conducted by telephone only.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Any member of the public who wants further information concerning this public meeting may contact Dr. Sue Shallal, Designated Federal Officer (DFO), via telephone at (202) 564- 2057 or email at shallal.suhair@epa.gov. General information concerning the SAB can be found on the EPA Web site at http://www.epa.gov/sab.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-24/html/2014-14677.htm

  • Executive Office of the President

  • Creating a Federal Strategy To Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators

    Presidential Documents

    Memorandum for Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies

    Pollinators contribute substantially to the economy of the United States and are vital to keeping fruits, nuts, and vegetables in our diets. Honey bee pollination alone adds more than $15 billion in value to agricultural crops each year in the United States. Over the past few decades, there has been a significant loss of pollinators, including honey bees, native bees, birds, bats, and butterflies, from the environment. The problem is serious and requires immediate attention to ensure the sustainability of our food production systems, avoid additional economic impact on the agricultural sector, and protect the health of the environment.

    Pollinator losses have been severe. The number of migrating Monarch butterflies sank to the lowest recorded population level in 2013-14, and there is an imminent risk of failed migration. The continued loss of commercial honey bee colonies poses a threat to the economic stability of commercial beekeeping and pollination operations in the United States, which could have profound implications for agriculture and food. Severe yearly declines create concern that bee colony losses could reach a point from which the commercial pollination industry would not be able to adequately recover. The loss of native bees, which also play a key role in pollination of crops, is much less studied, but many native bee species are believed to be in decline. Scientists believe that bee losses are likely caused by a combination of stressors, including poor bee nutrition, loss of forage lands, parasites, pathogens, lack of genetic diversity, and exposure to pesticides.

    Given the breadth, severity, and persistence of pollinator losses, it is critical to expand Federal efforts and take new steps to reverse pollinator losses and help restore populations to healthy levels. These steps should include the development of new public- private partnerships and increased citizen engagement. Therefore, by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct the following:

    Section 1. Establishing the Pollinator Health Task Force. There is hereby established the Pollinator Health Task Force (Task Force), to be co-chaired by the Secretary of Agriculture and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to the Co- Chairs, the Task Force shall also include the heads, or their designated representatives, from:

    (a) the Department of State;

    (b) the Department of Defense;

    (c) the Department of the Interior;

    (d) the Department of Housing and Urban Development;

    (e) the Department of Transportation;

    (f) the Department of Energy;

    (g) the Department of Education;

    (h) the Council on Environmental Quality;

    (i) the Domestic Policy Council;

    (j) the General Services Administration;

    (k) the National Science Foundation;

    (l) the National Security Council Staff;

    (m) the Office of Management and Budget;

    (n) the Office of Science and Technology Policy; and

    (o) such executive departments, agencies, and offices as the Co-Chairs may designate.

    Sec. 2. Mission and Function of the Task Force. Within 180 days of the date of this memorandum, the Task Force shall develop a National Pollinator Health Strategy (Strategy), which shall include explicit goals, milestones, and metrics to measure progress. The Strategy shall include the following components:

    (a) Pollinator Research Action Plan. The Strategy shall include an Action Plan (Plan) to focus Federal efforts on understanding, preventing, and recovering from pollinator losses. The Plan shall be informed by research on relevant topics and include:

    (i) studies of the health of managed honey bees and native bees, including longitudinal studies, to determine the relative contributions of, and mitigation strategies for, different stressors leading to species declines and colony collapse disorder, including exposure to pesticides, poor nutrition, parasites and other pests, toxins, loss of habitat and reduced natural forage, pathogens, and unsustainable management practices;

    (ii) plans for expanded collection and sharing of data related to pollinator losses, technologies for continuous monitoring of honey bee hive health, and use of public-private partnerships, as appropriate, to provide information on the status and trends of managed hive losses;

    (iii) assessments of the status of native pollinators, including the Monarch butterfly and bees, and modeling of native pollinator populations and habitats;

    (iv) strategies for developing affordable seed mixes, including native pollinator-friendly plants, for maintenance of honey bees and other pollinators, and guidelines for and evaluations of the effectiveness of using pollinator-friendly seed mixes for restoration and reclamation projects;

    (v) identification of existing and new methods and best practices to reduce pollinator exposure to pesticides, and new cost-effective ways to control bee pests and diseases; and

    (vi) strategies for targeting resources toward areas of high risk and restoration potential and prioritizing plans for restoration of pollinator habitat, based on those areas that will yield the greatest expected net benefits.

    (b) Public Education Plan. The Strategy shall include plans for expanding and coordinating public education programs outlining steps individuals and businesses can take to help address the loss of pollinators. It shall also include recommendations for a coordinated public education campaign aimed at individuals, corporations, small businesses, schools, libraries, and museums to significantly increase public awareness of the importance of pollinators and the steps that can be taken to protect them.

    (c) Public-Private Partnerships. The Strategy shall include recommendations for developing public-private partnerships to build on Federal efforts to encourage the protection of pollinators and increase the quality and amount of habitat and forage for pollinators. In developing this part of the Strategy, the Task Force shall consult with external stakeholders, including State, tribal, and local governments, farmers, corporations, and nongovernmental organizations.

    (d) Task Force member agencies shall report regularly to the Task Force on their efforts to implement section 3 of this memorandum.

    Sec. 3. Increasing and Improving Pollinator Habitat. Unless otherwise specified, within 180 days of the date of this memorandum:

    (a) Task Force member agencies shall develop and provide to the Task Force plans to enhance pollinator habitat, and subsequently implement, as appropriate, such plans on their managed lands and facilities, consistent with their missions and public safety. These plans may include: facility landscaping, including easements; land management; policies with respect to road and other rights-of-way; educational gardens; use of integrated vegetation and pest management; increased native vegetation; and application of pollinator- friendly best management practices and seed mixes. Task Force member agencies shall also review any new or renewing land management contracts and grants for the opportunity to include requirements for enhancing pollinator habitat.

    (b) Task Force member agencies shall evaluate permit and management practices on power line, pipeline, utility, and other rights-of-way and easements, and, consistent with applicable law, make any necessary and appropriate changes to enhance pollinator habitat on Federal lands through the use of integrated vegetation and pest management and pollinator-friendly best management practices, and by supplementing existing agreements and memoranda of understanding with rights-of-way holders, where appropriate, to establish and improve pollinator habitat.

    (c) Task Force member agencies shall incorporate pollinator health as a component of all future restoration and reclamation projects, as appropriate, including all annual restoration plans.

    (d) The Council on Environmental Quality and the General Services Administration shall, within 90 days of the date of this memorandum, revise their respective guidance documents for designed landscapes and public buildings to incorporate, as appropriate, pollinator- friendly practices into site landscape performance requirements to create and maintain high quality habitats for pollinators. Future landscaping projects at all Federal facilities shall, to the maximum extent appropriate, use plants beneficial to pollinators.

    (e) The Departments of Agriculture and the Interior shall, within 90 days of the date of this memorandum, develop best management practices for executive departments and agencies to enhance pollinator habitat on Federal lands.

    (f) The Departments of Agriculture and the Interior shall establish a reserve of native seed mixes, including pollinator-friendly plants, for use on post- fire rehabilitation projects and other restoration activities.

    (g) The Department of Agriculture shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, substantially increase both the acreage and forage value of pollinator habitat in the Department's conservation programs, including the Conservation Reserve Program, and provide technical assistance, through collaboration with the land-grant university- based cooperative extension services, to executive departments and agencies, State, local, and tribal governments, and other entities and individuals, including farmers and ranchers, in planting the most suitable pollinator-friendly habitats.

    (h) The Department of the Interior shall assist States and State wildlife organizations, as appropriate, in identifying and implementing projects to conserve pollinators at risk of endangerment and further pollinator conservation through the revision and implementation of individual State Wildlife Action Plans. The Department of the Interior shall, upon request, provide technical support for these efforts, and keep the Task Force apprised of such collaborations.

    (i) The Department of Transportation shall evaluate its current guidance for grantees and informational resources to identify opportunities to increase pollinator habitat along roadways and implement improvements, as appropriate. The Department of Transportation shall work with State Departments of Transportation and transportation associations to promote pollinator-friendly practices and corridors. The Department of Transportation shall evaluate opportunities to make railways, pipelines, and transportation facilities that are privately owned and operated aware of the need to increase pollinator habitat.

    (j) The Department of Defense shall, consistent with law and the availability of appropriations, support habitat restoration projects for pollinators, and shall direct military service installations to use, when possible, pollinator-friendly native landscaping and minimize use of pesticides harmful to pollinators through integrated vegetation and pest management practices.

    (k) The Army Corps of Engineers shall incorporate conservation practices for pollinator habitat improvement on the 12 million acres of lands and waters at resource development projects across the country, as appropriate.

    (l) The Environmental Protection Agency shall assess the effect of pesticides, including neonicotinoids, on bee and other pollinator health and take action, as appropriate, to protect pollinators; engage State and tribal environmental, agricultural, and wildlife agencies in the development of State and tribal pollinator protection plans; encourage the incorporation of pollinator protection and habitat planting activities into green infrastructure and Superfund projects; and expedite review of registration applications for new products targeting pests harmful to pollinators.

    (m) Executive departments and agencies shall, as appropriate, take immediate measures to support pollinators during the 2014 growing season and thereafter. These measures may include planting pollinator-friendly vegetation and increasing flower diversity in plantings, limiting mowing practices, and avoiding the use of pesticides in sensitive pollinator habitats through integrated vegetation and pest management practices.

    Sec. 4. General Provisions.

    (a) This memorandum shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

    (b) Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

    (i) the authority granted by law to any agency, or the head thereof; or

    (ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

    (c) Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to require the disclosure of confidential business information or trade secrets, classified information, law enforcement sensitive information, or other information that must be protected in the interest of national security or public safety.

    (d) This memorandum is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

    (e) The Secretary of Agriculture is hereby authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-24/html/2014-14946.htm

  • Interior

  • Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill; Final Programmatic and Phase III Early Restoration Plan and Final Early Restoration Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement

    AGENCY: Interior.

    ACTION: Notice of availability.


    SUMMARY: In accordance with the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), notice is hereby given that the Federal Deepwater Horizon natural resource trustee agencies and the State Deepwater Horizon natural resource trustee agencies for Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida (Participating Trustees) have prepared a Final Programmatic and Phase III Early Restoration Plan and Final Early Restoration Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (Final Phase III ERP/PEIS, or Plan). This notice announces the availability of the Final Phase III ERP/PEIS. The Texas natural resource trustee agencies are not joining in the issuance of the Final Phase III ERP/PEIS at this time.

    The Final Phase III ERP/PEIS considers programmatic alternatives comprised of early restoration project types that would restore natural resources, ecological services, and recreational use services injured or lost as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and related response actions. The Participating Trustees additionally propose to select 44 specific early restoration projects for implementation that are consistent with the proposed preferred early restoration program alternative. The Participating Trustees have developed restoration alternatives and projects to utilize funds for early restoration being provided under the Framework for Early Restoration Addressing Injuries Resulting from the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill (Framework Agreement) discussed below. The Final Phase III ERP/PEIS evaluates these programmatic restoration alternatives and projects under criteria set forth in the natural resource damage assessment regulations and the Framework Agreement. The Final Phase III ERP/PEIS also evaluates the environmental consequences of the restoration alternatives and projects under NEPA. The purpose of this notice is to inform the public of the availability of the Final Phase III ERP/PEIS.

    ADDRESSES: Obtaining Documents: You may download the Final Phase III ERP/PEIS at http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov or http://www.doi.gov/deepwaterhorizon. You may also view the Final Phase III ERP/PEIS at any of the public repositories listed at http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Nanciann Regalado, nanciann_regalado@fws.gov.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-26/html/2014-14952.htm

  • Policy Regarding Implementation of Section 4(b)(2) of the Endangered Species Act

    AGENCIES: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior; National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

    ACTION: Notice; extension of comment period.


    SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (collectively referred to as the "Services'' or "we''), announce the extension of the public comment period on our May 12, 2014, draft policy regarding implementation of section 4(b)(2) of the Endangered Species Act. Comments previously submitted need not be resubmitted, as they will be fully considered in preparation of the final policy.

    DATES: We will accept comments from all interested parties until October 9, 2014. Please note that if you are using the Federal eRulemaking Portal (see ADDRESSES section, below), the deadline for submitting an electronic comment is 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on this date.

    ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. In the Search box, enter the docket number for the draft policy, which is FWS-R9-ES-2011-0104. You may submit a comment by clicking on "Comment Now!'' Please ensure that you have found the correct rulemaking before submitting your comment.

    U.S. mail: Public Comments Processing, Attn: Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2011-0104; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042-PDM; Arlington, VA 22203.

    We will post all comments on http://www.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see the Public Comments section, below, for more information).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Douglas Krofta, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Division of Conservation and Classification, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 420, Arlington, VA 22203; telephone 703/358-2171; facsimile 703/358-1735; or Marta Nammack, National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910; telephone 301/713-8469; facsimile 301/713-0376. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800/877-8339.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-26/html/2014-14773.htm

  • National Science Foundation

  • Request for Comments on the Intent To Discontinue Part 2 of the Survey of Science and Engineering Research Facilities on Computing and Networking Capacity

    AGENCY: National Science Foundation.

    ACTION: Request for comments.


    SUMMARY: This notice announces the intent of the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) at the National Science Foundation (NSF) to discontinue data collection for Part 2 of the Survey of Science and Engineering Research Facilities (Facilities Survey) (OMB Clearance Number 3145-0101) on computing and networking capacity at academic institutions. This notice is in response to an effort by NCSES to assess the value of these data.

    DATES: Send your written comments by August 15, 2014.

    ADDRESSES: Send your written comments to Mr. John R. Gawalt, Director, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Room 965, Arlington, VA 22230. Send email comments to jgawalt@nsf.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. John R. Gawalt, Director, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation at (703) 292-7776 or email at jgawalt@nsf.gov.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-06-23/html/2014-14589.htm