[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 216 (Wednesday, November 8, 2006)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 65445-65446]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-18903]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Coast Guard

33 CFR Part 151

[USCG-2006-26136]


Potential Revision of Mandatory Ballast Water Management 
Reporting Requirements

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION: Notice; request for public comments.

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SUMMARY: The Coast Guard requests public comments on our current 
ballast water management reporting and recordkeeping requirements. To 
provide additional opportunity for public comment, public meetings will 
be held in the Great Lakes and Gulf of Mexico regions. All stakeholders 
and interested parties are encouraged to submit comments to the docket 
and to attend a public meeting in or near their region.

DATES: Comments and related material must reach the Docket Management 
Facility on or before March 16, 2007.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Coast Guard docket 
number USCG-2006-26136 to the Docket Management Facility at the U.S. 
Department of Transportation. To avoid duplication, please use only one 
of the following methods:
    (1) Web Site: http://dms.dot.gov.
    (2) Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590-0001.
    (3) Fax: 202-493-2251.
    (4) Delivery: Room PL-401 on the Plaza level of the Nassif 
Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The telephone 
number is 202-366-9329.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this notice, 
contact LT Heather St. Pierre, Project Manager, Environmental Standards 
Division, Coast Guard, via telephone at 202-372-1432 or via e-mail at 
Heather.J.St.Pierre@uscg.mil. If you have questions on viewing or 
submitting material to the docket, call Renee V. Wright, Program 
Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202-493-0402.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Request for Comments

    All comments received will be posted, without change, to http://
dms.dot.gov and will include any personal information you have 
provided. We have an agreement with the Department of Transportation 
(DOT) to use the Docket Management Facility. Please see DOT's ``Privacy 
Act'' paragraph below.
    Submitting comments: If you submit a comment, please include your 
name and address, identify the docket number for this notice (USCG-
2006-26136) and give the reason for each comment. You may submit your 
comments by electronic means, mail, fax, or delivery to the Docket 
Management Facility at the address under ADDRESSES; but please submit 
your comments by only one means. If you submit them by mail or 
delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 8\1/2\ by 11 
inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing. If you submit them 
by mail and would like to know that they reached the Facility, please 
enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope. We will 
consider all comments received during the comment period.
    Viewing comments and documents: To view comments, go to http://
dms.dot.gov at any time, click on ``Simple Search,'' enter the last 
five digits of the docket number for this notice, and click on 
``Search.'' You may also visit the Docket Management Facility in room 
PL-401 on the Plaza level of the Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, 
SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 
except Federal holidays.
    Privacy Act: Anyone can search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review the 
Department of Transportation's Privacy Act Statement in the Federal 
Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477), or you may visit 
http://dms.dot.gov.

Background and Purpose

    In accordance with the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention 
and Control Act of 1990 (as reauthorized and amended by the National 
Invasive Species Act of 1996 (NISA)), the Coast Guard promulgated 
ballast water management (BWM) regulations in 33 CFR part 151, subparts 
C and D. As part of NISA, Congress authorized the Coast Guard to 
require BWM reporting and recordkeeping so that we can monitor 
discharge trends and practices as well as monitor compliance with BWM 
regulations.
    Subpart C of 33 CFR part 151 applies to vessels carrying ballast 
water after operating outside of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) 
that enter the Snell Lock at Massena, New York, or vessels that 
navigate north of the George Washington Bridge on the Hudson River. In 
accordance with 33 CFR 151.1516 and 151.2041(b)(1)-(2), vessels 
entering the Great Lakes or Hudson River, north of the George 
Washington Bridge, must submit BWM reports at least 24 hours prior to 
arrival.
    The regulations in subpart D apply to all vessels, foreign and 
domestic, equipped with ballast tanks that operate in U.S. waters and 
are bound for U.S. ports or places. 33 CFR 151.2041 contains specific 
BWM reporting requirements. To accompany these regulations, we also 
published

[[Page 65446]]

Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular (NVIC) 07-04, entitled 
``Ballast Water Management for the Control of Aquatic Nuisance Species 
in the Waters of the United States'' and change 1 to this guidance 
document. NVIC 07-04 also provides additional guidance on the 
equivalent reporting program for vessels operating exclusively within 
the EEZ (as established in 33 CFR 151.2043), allowing approved vessels 
to submit reports on a monthly basis, as opposed to the standard 
schedule required by 33 CFR 151.2041.
    These BWM reporting requirements are currently being reviewed for 
potential revisions. In this review process, the Coast Guard is 
interested in receiving comments on current reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements contained in the mandatory BWM regulations in 33 CFR part 
151, subparts C and D. Specifically, the Coast Guard is seeking public 
comments on the current ballast water management reporting submission 
requirements, including comments on vessel types currently required to 
submit ballast water management reporting forms. Also, the Coast Guard 
is seeking comments on the ballast water reporting form itself to 
determine whether or not the form should be updated. Comments submitted 
to the docket may or may not be used to amend these ballast water 
management reporting requirements.
    The Coast Guard plans to hold two public meetings associated with 
this notice to provide additional opportunities for public comment. 
These meetings are planned to be held during the week of March 12, 
2007; one meeting will be held in the Great Lakes region and the other 
in the Gulf of Mexico. Specific information on these meetings will be 
published in the Federal Register as a separate follow-on notice. All 
stakeholders and interested parties are encouraged to submit comments 
to the docket and to attend a public meeting in or near their region.

    Dated: November 3, 2006.
J.G. Lantz,
Director of National and International Standards, Assistant Commandant 
for Prevention, U.S. Coast Guard.
 [FR Doc. E6-18903 Filed 11-7-06; 8:45 am]
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