NEWS NOTES ON SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCES GAO Report on NOAA Hydrography GAO Report to Congressional Requestors, Hydrographic Surveying, NOAA Ne...

NEWS NOTES ON SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCES GAO Report on NOAA Hydrography GAO Report to Congressional Requestors, Hydrographic Surveying, NOAA Needs Better Cost Data and a Strategy for Expanding Private Sector Involvement in Data Collection , US Government Accountability Office, GAO-17-510, June 2017. http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-17-510?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdeliveryNOAA is responsible for collecting hydrographic data—that is, data on the depth and bottom configuration of water bodies—to help create nautical charts. NOAA collects data using its fleet and also procures data from the private sector. The Hydrographic Services Improvement Act of 1998 requires NOAA to acquire such data from the private sector “to the greatest extent practicable and cost-effective.” GAO was asked to review NOAA efforts to collect hydrographic data. This report examines (1) how NOAA determines its hydrographic survey priorities, (2) NOAA’s efforts to compare the costs of collecting its own survey data to the costs of procuring such data from the private sector, and (3) the extent to which NOAA has developed a strategy for private sector involvement in hydrographic data collection. GAO recommends that NOAA (1) ensure that its efforts to improve its cost comparison reports include actions to fully track asset and maintenance costs and (2) develop a strategy for expanding private sector involvement in the hydrographic survey program. NOAA agreed with GAO’s recommendations. This report will also be linked on the 2017 Reports and Publications Page of the Sustainable Water Resources Site at https://sites.google.com/site/sustainablewaterresources/ Tim Smith Sustainable Water Resources Coordinator Government Web Site, https://acwi.gov/Sustainable Water Resources Site, https://sites.google.com/site/sustainablewaterresources/