H.R.5657 - To amend the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act to ensure that protection of the marine and coastal environment is of primary importance in making areas of the outer Continental Shelf available for leasing, exploration, and development rather than expeditious development of oil and gas resources, to prohibit oil and gas leasing, exploration, and development in important ecological areas of the outer Continental Shelf, and for other purposes.111th Congress (2009-2010)
Summary: H.R.5657 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)
Introduced in House (06/30/2010)
Amends the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act to revise the policy concerning resource development on the outer Continental Shelf (OCS) to: (1) include emphasis of the importance of protection, maintenance, and restoration of the marine and coastal environments; and (2) state that leasing, exploration, or development will be authorized in limited areas only when sound science shows that such activities can proceed with minimal risk to the health of such environments.
Authorizes the leasing, exploration, and development of oil and gas resources of the OCS only if the Secretary of the Interior: (1) has a thorough understanding of the marine coastal environments affected by the activity and an environmental baseline, the risks of exploration or development, and the potential consequences of emergencies; and (2) determines, on the basis of sound science, that risks are minimal, rigorous safety measures are in place and will be enforced, and there is a demonstrated ability to mount an effective response to accidents in real-world conditions.
Prohibits inclusion in an oil and gas leasing program under the Act any area of the OCS that, by itself or in a network, has distinguishing ecological characteristics, is important for maintaining habitat heterogeneity or the viability of a species, or contributes disproportionately to the health of an ecosystem.