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Full Text of this Amendment

SA 4856. Mr. BARRASSO submitted an amendment intended to be proposed by him to the bill S. 3036, to direct the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to establish a program to decrease emissions of greenhouse gases, and for other purposes; which was ordered to lie on the table; as follows:

At the end of title XVII, add the following:
Subtitle H--Atmospheric Removal of Greenhouse Gases

This subtitle may be cited as the ``Greenhouse Gas Emission Atmospheric Removal Act'' or the ``GEAR Act''.
It is the policy of the United States to provide incentives to encourage the development and implementation of technology to permanently remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere on a significant scale.
In this subtitle:
(1) COMMISSION.--The term ``Commission'' means the Greenhouse Gas Emission Atmospheric Removal Commission established by section 1775(a).
(2) GREENHOUSE GAS.--The term ``greenhouse gas'' means--
(A) carbon dioxide;
(B) methane;
(C) nitrous oxide;
(D) sulfur hexafluoride;
(E) a hydrofluorocarbon;
(F) a perfluorocarbon; and
(G) any other gas that the Commission determines is necessary to achieve the purposes of this subtitle.
(3) INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY.--The term ``intellectual property'' means--
(A) an invention that is patentable under title 35, United States Code; and
(B) any patent on an invention described in subparagraph (A).
(4) SECRETARY.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of Energy.
The Secretary, acting through the Commission, shall provide to public and private entities, on a competitive basis, financial awards for the achievement of milestones in developing and applying technology that could significantly slow or reverse the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by permanently capturing or sequestrating those gases without significant countervailing harmful effects.
(a) Establishment.--There is established within the Department of Energy a commission to be known as the ``Greenhouse Gas Emission Atmospheric Removal Commission''.
(b) Membership.--
(1) COMPOSITION.--The Commission shall be composed of 11 members appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, who shall provide expertise in--
(A) climate science;
(B) physics;
(C) chemistry;
(D) biology;
(E) engineering;
(F) economics;
(G) business management; and
(H) such other disciplines as the Commission determines to be necessary to achieve the purposes of this subtitle.
(A) TERM.--A member of the Commission shall serve for a term of 6 years.
(B) VACANCIES.--A vacancy on the Commission--
(i) shall not affect the powers of the Commission; and
(ii) shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment was made.
(3) INITIAL MEETING.--Not later than 30 days after the date on which all members of the Commission have been appointed, the Commission shall hold the initial meeting of the Commission.
(4) MEETINGS.--The Commission shall meet at the call of the Chairperson.
(5) QUORUM.--A majority of the members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number of members may hold hearings.
(6) CHAIRPERSON AND VICE CHAIRPERSON.--The Commission shall select a Chairperson and Vice Chairperson from among the members of the Commission.
(7) COMPENSATION.--A member of the Commission shall be compensated at level III of the Executive Schedule.
(c) Duties.--The Commission shall--
(1) subject to subsection (d), develop specific requirements for--
(A) the competition process;
(B) minimum performance standards;
(C) monitoring and verification procedures; and
(D) the scale of awards for each milestone identified under paragraph (3);
(2) establish minimum levels for the capture or net sequestration of greenhouse gases that are required to be achieved by a public or private entity to qualify for a financial award described in paragraph (3);
(3) in coordination with the Secretary, offer those financial awards to public and private entities that demonstrate--
(A) a design document for a successful technology;
(B) a bench scale demonstration of a technology;
(C) technology described in subparagraph (A) that--
(i) is operational at demonstration scale; and
(ii) achieves significant greenhouse gas reductions; and
(D) operation of technology on a commercially viable scale that meets the minimum levels described in paragraph (2); and
(4) submit to Congress--
(A) an annual report that describes the progress made by the Commission and recipients of financial awards under this section in achieving the demonstration goals established under paragraph (3); and
(B) not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, a report that describes the levels of funding that are necessary to achieve the purposes of this subtitle.
(d) Public Participation.--In carrying out subsection (c)(1), the Commission shall--
(1) provide notice of and, for a period of at least 60 days, an opportunity for public comment on, any draft or proposed version of the requirements described in subsection (c)(1); and
(2) take into account public comments received in developing the final version of those requirements.
(e) Peer Review.--No financial award may be provided under this subtitle until such time as the proposal for which the award is sought has been peer reviewed in accordance with such standards for peer review as the Commission shall establish.
(a) In General.--Title to any intellectual property arising from a financial award provided under this subtitle shall vest in 1 or more entities that are incorporated in the United States.
(b) Reservation of License.--The United States--
(1) may reserve a nonexclusive, nontransferable, irrevocable, paid-up license, to have practiced for or on behalf of the United States, in connection with any intellectual property described in subsection (a); but
(2) shall not, in the exercise of a license reserved under paragraph (1), publicly disclose proprietary information relating to the license.
(c) Transfer of Title.--Title to any intellectual property described in subsection (a) shall not be transferred or passed, except to an entity that is incorporated in the United States, until the expiration of the first patent obtained in connection with the intellectual property.
There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out this subtitle.
The Commission and all authority of the Commission provided under this subtitle terminate on December 31, 2020.

(As printed in the Congressional Record for the Senate on Jun 4, 2008.)