Charter for the High Plains Aquifer Coalition
Kansas Geological Survey, A Division of the University of Kansas
New Mexico Bureau of Mines and Mineral Resources, A Division of New Mexico Tech
Nebraska Conservation and Survey Division, A Division of the University of Nebraska
Texas Bureau of Economic Geology, A Division of the University of Texas
Colorado Geological Survey, A Division of the Department of Natural Resources
Oklahoma Geological Survey, A Division of the University of Oklahoma
South Dakota Geological Survey, A Division of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Wyoming State Geological Survey, An Agency of the State of Wyoming
U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior
This Charter (hereinafter referred to as Agreement) between the Kansas Geological Survey, the New Mexico Bureau of Mines and Mineral Resources, the Colorado Geological Survey, the Oklahoma Geological Survey, the Texas Bureau of Economic Geology, the Nebraska Conservation and Survey Division, the South Dakota Geological Survey, the Wyoming State Geological Survey, and the U.S. Geological Survey (hereinafter referred to as the Parties) records the Parties' desire to cooperate in joint investigations and scientific exchanges concerning the earth sciences (including hydrology, geology, geochemistry, geochronology, geophysics, geotechnical and geological engineering and related investigations) on topics of mutual interest. This agreement is specifically undertaken to advance the understanding of the three-dimensional distribution, character, and nature of the sedimentary deposits that comprise the High Plains Aquifer in the eight-state Mid-continent region. It recognizes that the distribution, withdrawal, and recharge of groundwater, and the interaction with surface waters is profoundly affected by the geology and the natural environment of the High Plains Aquifer in all eight States--New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming--thereby establishing a commonality of interests among the Parties and citizens of these states. The Parties have agreed that reaching a fuller understanding of the three-dimensional framework and hydrogeology of the High Plains Aquifer is needed to provide regional and national policymakers with the earth-science information required to make wise decisions regarding urban and agricultural land use, the protection of aquifers and surface waters, and the environmental well being of the citizens of this geologically unique region.
The Parties agree to conduct exchanges and cooperate on the basis of equality, reciprocity, and mutual benefit.
ARTICLE 2Subject areas of cooperation are those of regional interest and may include:
ARTICLE 3The cooperation may be conducted in the following forms:
ARTICLE 4The need for interface of the Parties with many scientific disciplines and public policy entities demands interdisciplinary collaborative research and cooperation including:
ARTICLE 5No financial commitments are established by the Agreement, and it is understood that participation by any of the Parties in future activities shall be subject to the availability of funds. In accordance with the principles of equality, reciprocity, and mutual benefit, each Party to this agreement will endeavor to share material and financial resources to the extent possible and permissible by law, in effect "pooling" resources to accomplish research objectives that would require resources beyond those available to the individual Parties. Cooperative activities under this Agreement will be subject to, and dependent upon, the human and financial resources available to the Parties. The terms and conditions of financing shall be established by the Parties before the commencement of each activity and shall be set forth in each Annex to this Agreement. Any costs incurred by a Party that were not previously agreed upon in each Annex shall be borne by the Party that incurs them.
ARTICLE 6Activities under this Agreement shall be in accordance with applicable State and Federal laws. The provisions of this Agreement shall not affect the rights or obligations of any of the Parties under other agreements or arrangements with other agencies, contractors or individuals within or without the Parties' respective State boundaries.
ARTICLE 7The Parties will be individually responsible for publishing or publicly releasing the results of research not covered by an Annex to this Agreement and not involving cooperative activities with other Parities to the Agreement. The scientific, engineering, and technical results of cooperative projects conducted under this Agreement will be shared and published, or held confidential, in accordance with any specific terms agreed upon by the Parties for an individual project; such terms will include the provision that any joint publications of the results of studies resulting under this Agreement shall carry the Coalition logo (yet to be designed) and a statement acknowledging that the work was done in cooperation with the other Parties involved. A cooperative publication series will be developed as the natural outlet for jointly supported cooperative projects conducted under this Agreement. Details of the series will be established in an Annex to his Agreement. Each Party will have the privilege of open-filing or publishing non-confidential, non-proprietary data from a cooperative project in a timely manner following review and opportunity for comment by each of the other Parties. Responsibilities for costs of publication will be specified in each Annex to this Agreement. When necessary, an Annex shall include appropriate intellectual property provisions that recognize the rights and equities of each Party consistent with the applicable laws, regulations, and policies affecting the respective Parties.
ARTICLE 8Under each Annex to this Agreement, the Parties will appoint a coordinator who will facilitate communication and coordinate the joint activities specified in each Annex.
ARTICLE 9This Charter shall enter into force upon the signature of each of the Parties and shall remain in force for five (5) years, unless extended by mutual written agreement of the Parties. Any Party may withdraw from the Agreement by providing the other Parties with ninety (90) days advance notice. Any such withdrawal or termination shall be without prejudice to the rights that have accrued under this Agreement to any of the Parties up to the date of such withdrawal or termination. The terms of this Charter may be modified at any time upon mutual agreement of all parties.
Agreed at Socorro, New Mexico; Austin, Texas, Norman, Oklahoma, Lawrence, Kansas; Denver, Colorado; Lincoln, Nebraska; Vermillion, South Dakota; Laramie, Wyoming; and Reston, Virginia and to remain in force for 5 years from the latest date shown below, or until extended by mutual agreement of the Parties.
Policy StatementIn recognition of the key role played by the state water resource agencies, it is the responsibility of each state geological survey to consult with the appropriate water management or water regulatory agencies regarding any major technical initiatives undertaken under this charter.
Page updated Aug. 9, 2002
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