4
Future Program Effectiveness and Challenges

Earlier chapters discuss the extent to which the ERP has, in broad programmatic outline, addressed the questions of balance that form a major element in the charge directed to the panel. There remains the task of evaluating the ERP's work in its operational aspects. The panel determined that such an evaluation is best conducted in terms of certain of the ERP's specific subprograms. Accordingly, this chapter reviews critically and in some detail ERP's important subprograms and suggests opportunities for improvements. The critique is followed by a discussion of crosscutting issues of data and information management, communications, and human resources.

The current trajectory of rising domestic energy consumption is projected to continue over the next 20 years. Domestic resources of natural gas and coal are ample to meet this anticipated growing demand, but oil production is expected to continue to decline (Figure 1.2). Oil imports now exceed domestic production despite the fact that a substantial volume of technically recoverable mobile oil—a volume four times that of proved domestic reserves—remains in the nation's mature reservoirs and fields. Superimposed on these natural resource life-cycle evolutionary events are external forces driven by political and environmental concerns such as global climate change. Thus, in the face of the challenge of an expanding domestic and global appetite for energy, increasing dependence on imported oil, and sharply heightened awareness of the need for cleaner energy supply, the ERP should continue to meet the challenge of providing the necessary scientific information for policymakers to use in making informed decisions regarding the wise use of the nation's energy resources, federal land use, and geopolitical relations. Because a number of energy and environmental priorities



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--> 4 Future Program Effectiveness and Challenges Earlier chapters discuss the extent to which the ERP has, in broad programmatic outline, addressed the questions of balance that form a major element in the charge directed to the panel. There remains the task of evaluating the ERP's work in its operational aspects. The panel determined that such an evaluation is best conducted in terms of certain of the ERP's specific subprograms. Accordingly, this chapter reviews critically and in some detail ERP's important subprograms and suggests opportunities for improvements. The critique is followed by a discussion of crosscutting issues of data and information management, communications, and human resources. The current trajectory of rising domestic energy consumption is projected to continue over the next 20 years. Domestic resources of natural gas and coal are ample to meet this anticipated growing demand, but oil production is expected to continue to decline (Figure 1.2). Oil imports now exceed domestic production despite the fact that a substantial volume of technically recoverable mobile oil—a volume four times that of proved domestic reserves—remains in the nation's mature reservoirs and fields. Superimposed on these natural resource life-cycle evolutionary events are external forces driven by political and environmental concerns such as global climate change. Thus, in the face of the challenge of an expanding domestic and global appetite for energy, increasing dependence on imported oil, and sharply heightened awareness of the need for cleaner energy supply, the ERP should continue to meet the challenge of providing the necessary scientific information for policymakers to use in making informed decisions regarding the wise use of the nation's energy resources, federal land use, and geopolitical relations. Because a number of energy and environmental priorities

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--> may be ephemeral, it is essential that the longer-range needs of the nation remain paramount in the operations of the ERP. Over the past five years the ERP has undergone a substantial and successful metamorphosis. The new ERP program has established a well-deserved reputation for solid, scientifically based assessments, particularly of this nation's oil and gas resources. The panel recognizes that the broad acceptance of the 1995 oil and gas assessment is in large part due to inclusion by the ERP of states and private industry into the process—a substantial and well-advised departure from earlier assessments. This process of reinvention is the hallmark of an innovative USGS energy program that is evolving to meet the changing needs of the nation. Program Effectiveness Domestic Oil and Gas Subprogram The key role of the oil and gas subprogram is the comprehensive scientific assessment of the nation's undiscovered oil and gas resource endowment. This mission is supported by a parallel research program on the geologic framework of hydrocarbon occurrence and the geologic processes that form oil and gas resources. The oil and gas subprogram has achieved considerable success in its recent assessments of domestic oil and gas resources. Numerous stakeholders praised the assessments and their supporting research programs. The 1995 national oil and gas resource assessment went beyond conventional resources and included the development of new methodologies to assess unconventional resources—particularly the major gas basins, many of which are on public lands. The elucidation of resource issues such as oil and gas reserve growth, the natural gas resource endowment, and the development of methods for assessing coalbed methane resources are important contributions of the ERP to the creation of a better evaluation of the nation's energy resources. The preliminary assessment of methane hydrate gas resources is another important contribution. Future refinements may be contingent on close collaboration with the MMS, which has access to the proprietory seismic reflection data and borehole data that may support a more precise assessment in the offshore. By moving beyond conventional oil and gas resources, even though the methodologies are new and, in some cases, still developing, the ERP is providing leadership for the nation. Results of the recent assessment are now being made available to the ERP's constituents in a timely manner (see, for example, Sidebar 4.1) through well-publicized and well-attended workshops and presentations; through the release of maps, charts, and reports; and through publication in professional journals and books. The ERP has also made good use of advanced forms of information dissemination. The results of the most recent oil and gas assessment have been widely disseminated through the release of a set of CD-ROMs at no charge to the public. More than 10,000 CD-ROMs were requested by the pro-

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--> SIDEBAR 4.1 1995 National Assessment of Oil and Gas Resources: Two Applications Federal and state agencies and energy Industries continue to use the ERP's 1995 national assessment of oil and gas resources and its accompanying 1996 economic analysis as the standard for national oil and gas resource evaluations and land management and energy policy decisions. In 1997, DOI evaluated the National Petroleum Reserve In Alaska (NPRA) land management options based on USGS assessment results from the North Slope of Alaska—an area believed to have the greatest oil potential of any onshore region in the United States. The resulting DOI document, released In the fall of 1997, summarizes oil and gas resource potential and outlines alternatives for making the area available for exploration. In 1998, the NPS requested that the USGS conduct a specific oil and gas resource assessment of the Padre Island National Seashore. Results included in the 1995 national assessment were used as a basis for assessing the resources of Padre Island, and a report summarizing the resource potential of the National Seashore was delivered to NPS in May 1998. The NPS will use the results to generate a resource management plan for Padre Island. The NPS is so pleased with the report that it has asked the ERP to conduct similar analyses in two other national parks during the coming fiscal year. gram's constituencies. Users included federal agencies, states, and local jurisdictions; industry, especially the independents who drill most of the exploratory wells in the country; the financial community (often called on to finance wildcat exploration); and members of the general public. The panel commends the ERP for this innovative approach to data release. Supporting research in the domestic oil and gas program has clearly been guided by the needs of the national assessment program. Review of publications relevant to the assessments indicates that the research meets a high standard. Coal Resources Subprogram The current national coal resource assessment is early in its life cycle. In fact, it may be appropriate to think of the coal effort as being in a stage similar to that of the oil and gas program a decade ago. Like the domestic oil and gas subprogram, the primary role of the coal resources subprogram is the assessment of the nation's coal resource endowment. For the purposes of the national coal resource assessment, the nation has been divided into five principal coal-producing regions: (1) the northern and central Appalachians, (2) the Illinois Basin, (3) the Gulf of Mexico coastal plain, (4) the Tertiary age coals of Wyoming and

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--> the Northern Great Plains, and (5) the Colorado Plateau. In 1996, these five regions accounted for more than 95 percent of all the coal produced in the United States. Not all coal resources in these regions are being evaluated, but the more significant beds and zones are mapped, and all data are stored in a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) database. These beds and zones were selected on the basis of current production and potential for production in the near future. In addition, input was sought from a spectrum of potential clients, including state geological surveys in coal-producing regions, other federal agencies (especially those with land management responsibilities), and industry. The panel believes that the national coal assessment should be comprehensive. The ERP should include less well defined resources with correspondingly higher uncertainties, as well as coal deposits currently being exploited about which there is considerable information. Although it may make sense for most of the effort to focus on resources that have near-term economic significance, the panel believes that some effort to assess resources with potential longer-term significance should be included. Supporting research in the coal subprogram should ensure that an appropriate effort is undertaken on less studied and poorly characterized coal resources such as the deep lignites of the Gulf Coast Basin. These lignites are important, not only as a coal resource, but also because they could be a source of coalbed methane and may be a potential repository for the sequestration of CO2. It is the panel's view that scientists in the coal subprogram and in the oil and gas subprogram should work closely together in these two related resource areas by taking an integrated basin analysis approach to the assessment and study of coal, oil, and gas resources. In the panel's view, the national coal assessment should: •   identify and clearly state priorities (e.g., geographic locations, seam depth) of a comprehensive nationwide coal resource assessment ; •   identify and clearly state the assumptions of the framework of a comprehensive coal resource assessment; •   identify the portions of the resource endowment that are not included in the study and explain why; •   explain clearly the limitations, qualifications, and restrictions of the data used in the assessment; •   plan for evaluation of the remaining resource endowment as data become available or as resources become economically viable; and •   design a program of supporting research that adequately focuses on coal resources in basins that have not been extensively studied and that uses integrated, basin-scale studies incorporating modern approaches of sedimentology and sequence and seismic stratigraphy . This approach should result in a national assessment that includes an appropriate and broad spectrum of the coal resource endowment that can be ex-

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--> ploited on various time scales. The process should include active input from industry and the states. State involvement in the current coal efforts has already yielded considerable benefit, as shown in Sidebar 4.2. Several databases on coal parameters that are maintained by the ERP are useful and easily accessible to customers (see Sidebar 4.3). However, they contain only those data available to the ERP. Compared to oil and gas, the availability of public data for coal is more restricted. By law, oil and gas drilling logs and records become the property of appropriate state and/or federal oversite agencies and are consequently included in the ERP oil and gas investigations and assessments. In the case of coal, only drill information from reserves on state or federal lands must be supplied to an oversight agency. The result is that data on some coal reserves are known only to the coal companies and are unavailable to the ERP. Further, data available to the USGS exist in many forms. For example, some information is on a ''raw'' coal basis, some is on a raw coal basis with rock partings removed, and still other information is on a "washed" coal basis. As a result, USGS resource numbers often need additional engineering analysis to determine the quality and quantity of coal that can be produced from a given area. This engineering analysis requires knowledge of various factors that affect the cost of production as well as the percentage of a reserve base that can be recovered. These factors run the gamut and include labor quality; mining technology; and local coal quality characteristics, chemistry, and variability. The panel suggests that the ERP should state clearly the limitations on the use of the coal resource data to guard against misuse or misinterpretation when its national coal assessment is prepared. Closer linkages between the coal subprogram and industry, as suggested by the panel, would have several benefits. Such an alliance would facilitate rapid SIDEBAR 4.2 Coal Reserves and Collaboration between the USGS and Kentucky The Kentucky Geological Survey (KGS) released findings on Kentucky coal reserves that were discounted by the Kentucky Coal Association. The USGS helped facilitate discussions among the KGS and members of the Center for Energy and Economic Development (CEED) and the Kentucky Coal Association to demonstrate that the KGS methodology was detailed and sound. Much of the KGS data had been collected under USGS-funded projects, and corroboration of the KGS study by the USGS helped resolve the controversy, allowing Kentucky state planners as well as industry leaders to begin planning for changes within the local coal-based economy.

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--> SIDEBAR 4.3 National Coal Quality Inventory •   Regulatory agencies (e.g., EPA), electric utilities, and Industry use the database of coal attributes as the primary source of independent scientific Information for estimating the amounts of hazardous air pollutants and trace elements emitted from coal-bearing power plants as well as for development of regulatory policy for the nation. During FY 1997, the EPA released recommendations regarding air emissions from coal-fired power plants. They were based in part on data obtained from the USGS National Coal Quality Inventory. •   West Virginia's Department of Environmental Protection Is utilizing the USGS Coal Quality Database for a new Interactive GIS site on the World Wide Web. The web site provides the capability to display GIS maps of coal quality with up to nine different parameters (e.g., British thermal units per pound, sulfur content, ash content) from 77 coalbeds and 10 coal formations in West Virginia. The GIS maps are used by federal and state regulators, electric utilities, and the coal mining industry to determine the locations of coal resources that are in compliance with environmental regulations or that can be treated with appropriate coal cleaning technology prior to use to meet compliance. review of the ERP's national coal resource assessment, could help identify areas where questions remain, and might lead to the release of additional proprietary data to the ERP by the coal companies. Furthermore, active cooperation will help identify the restrictions and limitations of the data, thereby encouraging more appropriate use of the data by all interested parties. World Energy Subprogram Given the role of the United States in the global energy economy, access to information about the world's energy resource endowment is critical for national policy making. Despite modest funding for this subprogram, it has produced valuable assessments of world energy resources dating back to the first USGS analysis completed in 1965. With global demand for oil projected to increase 25 percent over 1995 levels by 2010 (PCAST, 1997), it will be increasingly important for policymakers in the United States to understand how and from where this demand will be fulfilled. Four previous USGS global oil and gas assessments were prepared from 1984 to 1994 by the same core group of geologists using a consistent methodology (USGS, 1997d). Despite this continuity, differences among the four assessments can be attributed largely to an evolving understanding of world oil and gas resources. The current assessment methodology is more rigorous and data intensive. Almost 1,000 petroleum provinces worldwide containing more than 32,500

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--> oil and gas fields have been identified and ranked. These assessments are well supported by parallel research projects in areas of strategic interest such as the Middle East and the countries of the former Soviet Union. The audiences for information developed by the subprogram are diverse and include industry (in support of its exploration programs), policymakers, the investment community, DOD, and the countries under study. The assessment strategy being followed is patterned after the well-tested domestic energy assessment approach, although the variable quality and availability of data inevitably involve greater uncertainty. The panel believes that consumers of the world energy subprogram's data are well satisfied by the ERP's products. Energy companies are eager for the information generated by the team, indicating that the products have high value. The world assessment effort appears to be receiving favorable attention from federal partners as well, indicating that the subprogram provides a product that meets a critical need. Crosscutting Issues The scientific staff of the ERP must face several key challenges if it is to maximize the future effectiveness of its efforts. Among them are (1) the management of large amounts of data in many formats, (2) the establishment of efficient communications within the USGS and with outside organizations, and (3) the development of a strategy to maintain and renew the scientific expertise that supports the ERP's resource portfolio. Data and Information Management The mission of the USGS is to provide "the Nation with reliable, impartial information to describe and understand the Earth" (USGS, 1997a, p.1). To fulfill this mission, it is imperative to have an organized and reliable system for storing and retrieving such information. Traditionally, information was organized, catalogued, archived, maintained, and disseminated with paper-based information management systems. Over the past two decades, the USGS has appropriately shifted to electronic data management and dissemination, including putting a large amount of material on-line for Internet access and publishing CD-ROMs instead of paper products. USGS information policies, standards, and practices are (and must be) consistent with various federal information mandates, laws governing technology transfer, and the North America Resource Assessment (NARA) archival guidelines. A stated goal of the ERP is to make most of its public domain data and GIS coverages accessible and searchable through the Internet. The ERP intends to integrate advanced digital capabilities into its program, in order to provide rapid and accurate response capability for its resource portfolio. This effort involves two complementary initiatives.

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--> First, data—including older, paper-based data sets—are being stored in electronic formats. The ERP is a custodian for several large searchable digital databases, and it contributes to and/or utilizes information from searchable digital databases maintained by other government programs and agencies. In addition, other collections of energy resource-related information have been archived electronically, some of which will be entered into a searchable format. These databases are described in Sidebar 4.4. The second initiative of the current ERP data management strategy is to design and build a software program for querying and displaying digital data geospatially (e.g., within a GIS). The "front-end" software system being built by the ERP is named the Decision Support System (DSS). It is intended to make available via the Internet map coverages and data sets that are important for land management and environmental issue strategies related to energy resources. It would allow for user-driven GIS mapping and user-defined queries of coverages and data sets. The DSS will require digital analytical data (see Sidebar 4.4), as well as digitized maps; aerial photos and satellite images; surface and subsurface land ownership data; land-use coverage; biological information such as endangered species habitats; and maps of locations of railroads, pipelines, and major highways. The DSS program currently exists as a prototype, with a goal of full Internet public implementation in FY 2000. The panel supports the ERP's strategy to improve accessibility to its data through the provision of computer-based information. Making reliable data and information products available electronically has considerable value for the ERP's customers: The task of producing digital and graphic products is one that must be faced by all programs in the USGS. The ERP should examine whether it can make use of database development efforts expended elsewhere in the USGS. It should consider participating in a centralized USGS-wide data and information management strategy that includes database development, data integration, archiving, and deliver". However, the USGS as a whole should consider the pros and cons of a centralized versus a decentralized system for data management. A centralized data management architecture may be too rigid to support the science community and other users of the system. Issues of information management are of great importance to many federal agencies. Recent studies (NRC, 1995, 1998) may offer useful guidance or policy options in this area. With respect to the second initiative, the panel supports the intent of the DSS, but questions whether software developed in-house will be more useful, less costly, and of sufficient longevity compared to a commercial product, when considered over the long term. The panel also questions whether there is sufficient coordination between the ERP and other USGS programs with respect to the DSS. The panel believes the ERP should be commended for recognizing the need to develop a capability such as the DSS. The panel suggests that the DSS project should be studied by USGS leadership to determine whether other divisions would benefit by joining in the project or whether the ERP should join

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--> SIDEBAR 4.4 ERP's Major Databases—June 1998 The ERP data management system is in transition to both tabular and spatial databases that are Internet accessible and searchable, Some databases are accessible to the public already, whereas others are in the process of being made accessible. Searchable Digital Databases for Which ERP Has Primary Maintenance Responsibility •   Energy Resources Program Bibliography (supersedes "coal bibliography database"): This database contains publications of the ERP from 1994 to 1997 on coal, oil, and natural gas resources by program staff. It is currently active and accessible at http://energy.er.usgs.gov/products/databases/Coalbibs/index.htm •   Coal Quality Database: This archive of all available coal quality information for the United States and the world is available via the Internet and as a CD-ROM, and is currently active and accessible at http://energy.er.usgs.gov/products/databases/Coal Qual/index.htm •   U.S. Coal Database: This contains published coal resource estimates for coal-bearing states listed by state, county, coal field, geologic age, formation, rank, coal thickness, and overburden thickness. It is currently active and accessible at http://energy.er.usgs.gov/products/databases/USCoal/index.htm •   National Oil and Gas Chemistry: This involves geochemical analyses of oil and natural gas; it is currently in the quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) phase. •   Gas Geochemistry Database: This was inherited from the U.S. Bureau of Mines and Is currently in the QA/QC phase. •   National Produced Waters Geochemistry: These geochemical analyses of waters produced from oil and gas wells are currently in the QA/QC phase. •   Alaska Thermal Maturity Database: This is currently in the QA/QC phase. •   World Oil and Gas Database: This database is under construction. Other Data Collections Maintained by ERP but Not Currently Searchable by Database Software •   1995 National Assessment of United States Oil and Gas Resources: Tabular input and results of the national assessment are available as a CD-ROM. •   COALPROD (Historical Production Data for the Major Coal-Producing Regions of the Conterminous United States): This collection is currently active and accessible at http://energy.er.usgs.gov/products/openflle/OFR97-447/index.htm •   Oil Shale Database: Fischer assay data for thousands of samples from Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah, are currently in the QA/QC phase and planned for future accessibility. •   The ERP contributes to and uses many other federal agency databases and also buys or shares licenses to use commercial databases. Source: Information provided by USGS.

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--> other programs in buying a license for commercially available data retrieval software. In addition to digital databases and paper records, the USGS manages physical databases that are relevant to the mission and role of the ERP. The USGS maintains a Core Research Center that is the largest public core repository in the country. The repository includes more than 1.1 million feet of core from 31 states. Approximately 95 percent of the core was donated by petroleum and mining companies, state geological surveys, other federal agencies, and universities, and these groups continue to use the collection extensively. The repository also has cuttings from more than 50,000 wells in 27 states. The collection of cuttings represents nearly 235 million feet of drilling at a replacement cost of more than $10 billion. Data management policies need to be reviewed to determine whether long-term archiving of and access to core, cuttings, and other geological samples are an important part of the mission and role of the ERP. Data management policies should include protocols for accession and deaccession of core and cuttings, policies for metadata, and on-line search capabilities. Communication The panel has earlier (see Chapter 3) pointed to the extent to which the content of the ERP's work is designed to meet the needs of a broad-ranging group of users. A closely related challenge for the ERP is to ensure that its products are conveyed in ways that facilitate their applications by business, policymakers in various levels of government, academics, and the public at large. It goes without saying that interaction and clear communication with other GD subprograms and USGS units are important tasks in their own right. Cultivating and maintaining all of these links place heavy demands on the staff of the ERP, but the effort is justified by the resulting expansion of the utility of ERP products. Communication successes include the following: •   fact sheets that are timely and useful; •   an e-mail list for notification of new publications, which is regarded by customers as a welcome improvement to the slow and difficult-to-use monthly publications pamphlet; •   publication of reports on CD-ROMs, which incorporate and augment an activity formerly dominated by open-file reports and speed up the publication and distribution process; and •   science policy outreach activities, as exemplified by rapid response analyses (see Sidebar 4.5). Opportunities exist for improved communications in the following areas:

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--> SIDEBAR 4.5 Rapid Response Analysis Oil and Gas Resource Potential Input to Land Swap Legislation In 1996, legislation was Introduced by Senators Dale Bumpers and Rob Nichols to swap 47,486 acres of federal land for 180,586 acres of private land, which would become part of the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas and Oklahoma. As part of the land swap, the oil and natural gas rights would be retained by private owners for the lands transferring to federal ownership, The USGS was asked to make an estimate of the oil and gas resource potential of the lands in question. The ERP conducted a rapid response analysis based on data generated as part of Its 1995 national assessment. An administrative report was prepared summarizing the results and delivered to Senator Bumpers within 36 hours of the request. The administrative report was read into the Senate record and was used as part of the justification for proceeding with the land swap, The legislation was enacted into law in late 1996. Oil and Gas Resource Potential of Federal Lands In Louisiana During 1996, rapidly expanding exploration of the Austin Chalk play in Louisiana placed great pressure on the federal government to make parts of the Kisatchie National Forest and a nearby military reservation available for leasing. Senator Bennett Johnston asked the USGS to estimate the oil and gas potential of these federal lands as a basis for facilitating a timely leasing decision. The ERP conducted a rapid response analysis based on data generated as part of its 1995 national assessment. An administrative report was prepared summarizing the results and delivered to Senator Johnston within 48 hours of the request. •   coordination and collaboration between subprograms; •   the geographic dispersion of staff, which means that special effort is required to maintain effective links between subprograms (the oil and gas and the coal subprograms have much to learn from each other because the resources being studied often occur in the same basins and formations, and areas such as coalbed methane call for close collaboration); •   interaction between the ERP and other USGS programs and divisions on data management issues; and •   public outreach to make the accomplishments of the ERP more visible to Congress, federal agencies, state and local governments, and the public. Human Resources Given the current focus of the ERP, the range of expertise in the program is appropriate (Figure 4.1). The academic qualifications of the professional staff are high (Figure 4.2). More than half of the research staff of the ERP has a Ph.D.

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--> Note: Resource appraisal includes statisticians and other non-geoscience trained professionals whose  research is applied primarily to enhance energy resource assessment. Figure 4.1 ERP expertise, FY 1998. Source: Data supplied by USGS. Figure 4.2 Academic qualifications of ERP staff, FY 1998.  Source: Data supplied by USGS.

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--> degree, and the remaining staff is equally divided between B.S. and M.S. degrees, an appropriate mix for a scientific agency such as the ERP. There is a balance between geological expertise in petroleum and in coal. Expertise in supporting disciplines such as computer applications and geophysics is adequate. The age profile of members of the professional staff, as indicated by the decade when their first academic degrees were awarded (Figure. 4.3a), is a matter of concern. Most of the research staff in the ERP received their first degrees in the 1970s, and there is a sharp and substantial decrease in the number of graduates from the 1980s compared to the 1960s and 1950s. Fully 91 percent Figure 4.3 Age profile of the ERP's research staff, FY 1998: (a) number of research staff earning bachelor's degrees by decade; (b) proportion of research staff earning bachelor's degrees by decade. Source: Data supplied by USGS.

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--> of the research staff of ERP earned their first degrees before the 1980s (Figure 4.3b). As noted in the USGS strategic plan (USGS, 1997a), revitalization of the agency's work force is a continuing process. The panel suggests that the ERP begin planning for renewal of its work force as well. This planning should be undertaken as part of the development of the ERP strategic plan (Chapter 2), and it should take into account any expansions of coverage of energy sources included in the plan. Given the ERP's links to industry, the program may wish to seek some staff with industrial experience in oil, gas, coal, and other energy sources. The ERP might also consider the use of internships and thesis support as a way to enhance educational opportunities for students interested in energy resource geology. The goal of the ERP should be to create an agile, diverse work force able to respond to the challenge of energy resource assessment across the portfolio Summary Many opportunities exist for the ERP to serve the future needs of the nation. The need for careful, thorough, science-based assessment is greater than ever. The need to be prepared for significant energy transitions in the next century means that understanding potential energy resources, in the United States and worldwide, will have great value. The effectiveness of the ERP and the expertise it has assembled equip it well to enter into its next phase. With appropriate attention to communications, to renewal of its human capital, and to management of the data it collects, the ERP will contribute significantly to the energy future of the United States.