IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
September 20, 2012
Mr. Pryor (for himself and Mr. Moran) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
To reauthorize the National Integrated Drought Information System, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Drought Information Act of
Reauthorization of National Integrated Drought Information System
Section 3 of the National Integrated Drought Information System Act of 2006 (15 U.S.C. 313d) is amended—
in subsection (a)—
and continue to support after
before the period at the end the following:
to better inform and provide
for more timely decisionmaking to reduce drought related impacts and
by striking subsection (b) and inserting the following:
The National Integrated Drought Information System shall—
provide an effective drought early warning system that—
collects and integrates information on the key indicators of drought in order to make usable, reliable, and timely forecasts of drought, including assessments of the severity of drought conditions and impacts; and
provides such information, forecasts, and assessments on both national and regional levels;
communicate drought forecasts, drought conditions, and drought impacts on an ongoing basis to—
decisionmakers at the Federal, regional, State, tribal, and local levels of government;
the private sector; and
provide timely data, information, and products that reflect local, regional, and State differences in drought conditions;
coordinate, and integrate as practicable, Federal research in support of a drought early warning system;
build upon existing forecasting and assessment programs and partnerships, such as partnerships with—
the Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments program of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration;
Cooperative Extension System offices of the Department of Agriculture;
the National Institute of Food and Agriculture;
the Office of the Chief Economist of the Department of Agriculture;
the Farm Service Agency; and
other Federal agencies or departments that monitor and disseminate weather and climate information; and
continue ongoing research activities related to drought, including research activities relating to length, severity, and impacts of drought and the role of extreme weather events and climate variability in drought.
Authorization of appropriations
Section 4 of such Act (15 U.S.C. 313d note) is amended—
in paragraph (5), by striking
and at the end;
in paragraph (6), by striking the period at
the end and inserting
; and; and
by adding at the end the following:
$14,500,000 for each of fiscal years 2013 through 2017.
Not later than 540 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere shall submit to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives a report on the National Integrated Drought Information System.
The report required by paragraph (1) shall include the following:
An assessment of the implementation of the National Integrated Drought Information System, including an assessment of how the information, forecasts, and assessments produced by such system are utilized in drought policy planning and response activities.
Specific plans for continued development of the system, including future milestones.
An identification of research, monitoring, and forecasting needs to enhance the predictive capability of—
drought early warnings;
the length and severity of droughts; and
the contribution of weather events to reducing the severity or ending drought conditions.
A list of persons in the private sector with whom the Under Secretary collaborates to implement the National Integrated Drought Information System.
A description of the outreach activities conducted by the Under Secretary regarding the National Integrated Drought Information System.
In developing the report required by paragraph (1), the Under Secretary shall consult with relevant Federal, regional, State, tribal, and local government agencies, research institutions, and the private sector.