Expert Reports

These reports are unique, authoritative expert evaluations. Each report is produced by a committee of experts selected by the Academy to address a particular statement of task and is subject to a rigorous, independent peer review.

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BioWatch PCR Assays: Building Confidence, Ensuring Reliability; Abbreviated Version (2015)

Biowatch is an air monitoring system deployed in jurisdictions around the country with the goal of detecting the presence of certain high risk pathogenic microorganisms as part of intelligence-gathering and biomonitoring activities that support public safety and health. This report examines standards for PCR assays appropriate for the BioWatch program, providing recommendations on general principles for a performance standard and validatio... More >>

Report in Brief

Review of the Everglades Aquifer Storage and Recovery Regional Study (2015)

This report reviews an 11-year regional study carried out by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the South Florida Water Management District to assess the regional effects of large-scale aquifer storage and recovery in the Florida Everglades. The regional study represents a significant advancement in the understanding of large-scale implementation in south Florida; however, there are still many uncertainties that merit additional study befor... More >>

Report in Brief

Affordability of National Flood Insurance Program Premiums: Report 1 (2015)

Established in 1968, the National Flood Insurance Program is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and offers flood insurance policies to property owners. As part of efforts to keep premiums low, nearly 20 percent of the 5.5 million National Flood Insurance Program policies nationwide pay subsidized premiums. In the catastrophic loss year of 2005, following Hurricane Katrina and subsequent storms, the program was drive... More >>

Report in Brief

Industrialization of Biology: A Roadmap to Accelerate the Advanced Manufacturing of Chemicals (2015)

A growing number of chemicals used in the manufacture of consumer goods, pharmaceuticals, and other products are being produced using biological systems -- the so called "industrialization of biology." Taking advantage of advancing knowledge of synthetic biology, bio-based chemicals can be cheaper and more environmentally sustainable than those produced through traditional chemical synthesis. For some complex chemicals, like pharmaceuticals o... More >>

Review of the Edwards Aquifer Habitat Conservation Plan: Report 1 (2015)

The Edwards Aquifer is the primary source of water for drinking and irrigation in the San Antonio area, and supplies the two largest freshwater springs in Texas, Comal Springs and San Marcos Springs. Both springs are used for recreation and are home to several species of fish, amphibians, insects, and plants found nowhere else. Seven Edwards Aquifer species are on the federal Endangered Species List because they are vulnerable to reduced sprin... More >>

Report in Brief