Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (09/24/1996)

National Invasive Species Act of 1996 - Amends the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990 to mandate regulations to prevent the introduction and spread of aquatic nuisance species into the Great Lakes through ballast water. Authorizes education, technical assistance, and other measures to promote compliance. Mandates voluntary guidelines to prevent such introduction and spread in U.S. waters by ballast water and other vessel operations. Mandates education, technical assistance, and other measures to encourage compliance. Requires mandatory regulations if guideline compliance is inadequate. Provides for enforcement through civil and criminal penalties and revocation of clearance. Encourages negotiations with foreign governments to develop and implement an international program for preventing such introduction and spread.

Mandates studies of Lake Champlain, the Chesapeake Bay, San Francisco Bay, Honolulu Harbor, the Columbia River system, other estuaries of national significance, and other waters. Requires that specified amounts be made available for research on aquatic nuisance species prevention and control in the Chesapeake Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific coast, and the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary.

Establishes a clearinghouse of national data on ballasting practices and compliance with guidelines under this Act.

Mandates a ballast water management program for vessels of the Department of Defense and the Coast Guard.

Requires: (1) a ballast water management program to demonstrate technologies and practices to prevent aquatic nonindigenous species from being introduced into and spread through ballast water in U.S. waters; and (2) that the installation and construction of those technologies and practices be performed in the United States.

Modifies: (1) the composition and research priorities of the Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force; and (2) zebra mussel demonstration program requirements.

Mandates research grants regarding environmentally sound methods for controlling the dispersal of aquatic nuisance species. Authorizes appropriations.

Requires research on environmentally sound methods for preventing and reducing dispersal between the Great Lakes-Saint Lawrence drainage and the Mississippi River drainage through the Chicago River Ship and Sanitary Canal. Authorizes appropriations.

Requires the Task Force to encourage the development and use of regional coordination panels and similar entities in regions in addition to the Great Lakes and Western regions.

Provides for interstate (in addition to existing State) aquatic nuisance species management plans, allowing Indian tribes as well as States to participate.

Authorizes appropriations.