33 USC 1224 - Considerations by Secretary

In carrying out his duties and responsibilities under section 1223 of this title, the Secretary shall
(a) take into account all relevant factors concerning navigation and vessel safety, protection of the marine environment, and the safety and security of United States ports and waterways, including but not limited to
(1) the scope and degree of the risk or hazard involved;
(2) vessel traffic characteristics and trends, including traffic volume, the sizes and types of vessels involved, potential interference with the flow of commercial traffic, the presence of any unusual cargoes, and other similar factors;
(3) port and waterway configurations and variations in local conditions of geography, climate, and other similar factors;
(4) the need for granting exemptions for the installation and use of equipment or devices for use with vessel traffic services for certain classes of small vessels, such as self-propelled fishing vessels and recreational vessels;
(5) the proximity of fishing grounds, oil and gas drilling and production operations, or any other potential or actual conflicting activity;
(6) environmental factors;
(7) economic impact and effects;
(8) existing vessel traffic services; and
(9) local practices and customs, including voluntary arrangements and agreements within the maritime community; and
(b) at the earliest possible time, consult with and receive and consider the views of representatives of the maritime community, ports and harbor authorities or associations, environmental groups, and other parties who may be affected by the proposed actions.