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OCEAN ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY
At the turn of the decade this committee was quite correct in emphasizing the scientific aspects of ocean activities in its attempts to stir the thinking of the executives and the Congress toward ocean-oriented activities. Because of the vigorous actions taken by it then, the scientific aspects of this matter have been coming along rather well. They are now in a condition where what is wanted primarily is more money put into the framework that has been laid.
Where the Russians are licking the britches off of us at sea is in what we like to call applied research and technology, although the older I get the harder I find it to distinguish between applied and basic research. There may even be some slight reason for the belief that we are leading them a little in the quality of ocean research leading toward the understanding of oceanic processes. I must admit, however, that while I hear this stated by my physical oceanographic colleagues, I have not yet seen any convincing proof of it.
Where the Russians outshine us brilliantly is in the rapid application of what they learn about the ocean and its resources. The pattern is clear. Their oceanographic vessels, as pure science, reconnoitre an area of ocean. They are followed the next year, or soon thereafter, by the research vessels of VNIRO, the Fishery Department of the State Planning Committee of the U.S.S.R. These vessels do quite competent hydrography of a more detailed nature and at the same time are equipped to do exploratory fishing at least sufficiently to find out what their echo sounders are seeing. Next come the commercial fishing vessels to explore on a commercial basis. These are also equipped with scientists, and if there is a sizable group of these vessels they are accompanied by a fishery research vessel which aids them as a group in following the thickest congregations of fish. As the fishery develops and puts strain upon the stock, the population dynamicists are brought into the picture so that overfishing can be detected, and prevented. If there is an International Fisheries Commission in the area being fished that they can join, the Russians join it and participate wholeheartedly in its work.
Back home the marine architects continue to develop new models of vessels to more effectively work the particular areas in hand, whether they lie in high latitudes or are equatorial, and the new vessels that are coming along steadily into the fleet are changing shape in accordance with the new designs and experience. The same thing is going on with gear research, experimental application in different fisheries, and final commercial usage.
The same thing goes on with the technology and engineering of fish preservation and processing. It continually changes and improves as the research results ashore are adapted to sea use and checked out, and then included in the new vessel designs. Great emphasis is given to the automation of all operations at sea and ashore concerned with the catching, dressing, preservation, processing, and transportation of fish and fish products. We talk about automating at sea; the Russians do it.
Over the whole operation, as well as its separate parts, trained economists and analysts continually work and rework the resulting data and apply their findings to the most effective patterns of fleet deployment with seasons, fish availability, weather, market conditions, etc., and to the matters of logistic support of farflung fleets.
The industrial managers of large fleets of large vessels covering large discrete areas of the world ocean are the bosses under the chairman of the fishery department of the State planning commission. To them the scientists, technologists, engineers, economists, and designers bring their skills for the solution of operational problems.
All of this is backed up by a massive educational activity at secondary and university level particularly created to train the specialists required for ocean harvesting. In this system are special colleges for ocean scientists, special colleges for fishery technologists, special colleges for naval architects, etc. Dr. Wenk of the legislative consultation branch can provide you with full data on these matters.
The overall objective of the ssytem is to produce more and more fish, of better and better landed quality, distributed more and more uniformly and steadily within Russia, with less and less cost in capital and labor. To promote efficiency at sea the share system of rewards is used. The key factor of success looks to me, as an outsider, to derive from the thorough integration of all activities connected with harvesting the sea to that one purpose, and from the massive injections of capital and specially trained labor that has been devoted to the work.
It is not by any means easy for an outsider to understand why their system is producing fish from the ocean so much more effectively than does ours and perhaps the following has little relevance. One notices, however, that up to now our oceanographers have worked primarily in academic laboratories with a good deal of disdain for fishery scientists in Government laboratories and a distaste for contact with the fishing industry and its problems. Fisheries scientists have worked primarily in governmental agencies, and in the United States there are subtle bars which make closely integrated activity between Government and industry seem not quite proper. There simply is not full cooperation and mutual respect amongst all Government scientists and all academic scientists dealing with the ocean. The fishing industry, on its part, often seems to scorn scientists of all sorts as double-domed oddities who merely want support for appropriations and cannot be looked to for useful contribution. These reasonably widespread mutual antipathies in the U.S. social structure do not create the sort of integrated approach to ocean harvesting which appears to illuminate the Russian effort.
Of course neither the executive nor the legislative branches have yet given substantial thought to what capital requirements there might be for a massive American assault upon the ocean. One would not expect either to do so until there is a mechanism developed for producing a national ocean program and a budget estimate with which to implement it.
Ocean engineering is a phrase much heard just now in ocean-oriented circles in the United States. I am told that this is the wave of the future in ocean activities and so it may be. But ocean engineering in this country to date has been largely done by the military, for military purposes, on military money and, for the most part, classified for military uses only so that its results do not emerge into the civilian economy. Sometimes a suspicious mind thinks that nobody knows ocean development secrets except the military in this country and the Russian military which has a good spy
with which to find out what our military is doing. Then one looks at the Russian fishing effort and wonders if the Russian industry might have a pipeline into this area of classification that the civilian fishing economy in this country has overlooked or been denied.
At any rate the two systems are different. The Russian one produces lots of fish and ours not quite so much. This is another of the reasons for suggesting a civilian Department of the Ocean to concentrate on problems the civilian industries have with the ocean. One would expect that such a civilian Department of the Ocean would develop a strong branch in ocean engineering and technology devoted to civilian problems. Should such a thing eventuate the two sick ocean industries of the United States—the merchant marine and the fisheries, might get well. From this might even develop a third and important industry, the harvest of the mineral resources of the Continental Shelf and the deep-sea bed. At least the chances of developing sound productive industries based on the resources of inner space the ocean-look as good as the chance of doing the same on the resources of outer space-and not quite so expensive.
We have been considering S. 944 and related matters pending before this committee dealing with the posture of the United States toward the ocean and the relationship of that to the economic, diplomatic, and military posture of the United States among nations at this stage in history. These four things seem clear to me:
1. The United States is doing poorly in cultivating the use of the sea for these purposes. Particularly it is being brilliantly outrun in this field by Russia.
2. It will not do better until it has a governmental apparatus suited to developing a national ocean program and considering a proper budget for it.
3. S. 944, if adopted, will go a long way toward the establishment of such a mechanism, but not far enough nor fast enough.
4. There is required, as well, the consolidation of major ocean-oriented civilian functions of the executive department into a Department of the Ocean which can serve as the focal point of developing the civilian national use of the ocean. STATEMENT OF REAR ADM. EDWARD C. STEPHAN, U.S. NAVY (RETIRED), PRESIDENT,
MARINE TECHNOLOGICAL SOCIETY Mr. Chairman, I am Edward C. Stephan, rear admiral, U.S. Navy (Retired) Although I am a retired naval officer and was invited to appear before this committee as the President of the Marine Technology Society, I am here as a private citizen to urge stronger steps to advance oceanography and ocean engineering in this country.
I appreciate the opportunity to appear before this committee in connection with the national ocean program and S. 944, a bill to set up a National Oceanographic Council.
The chairman, in his remarks at the time he introduced s. 944, spoke of the magnificent developments in atomic power and space which were stimulated by the enactment of the Atomic Energy Act and the National Aeronautics and Space Act. To a large extent modern oceanography has been made possible by technologies developed in the atomic-aero-space scientific surge of recent years. Almost directly from these advances have come the high quality instruments, digital recording of data, vast data handling capacity, telemetering, precise navigation positioning, and modern knowledge display techniques which make it possible, for the first time, to collect the data from which an understanding of the oceans may be derived and displayed in quickly usable form.
Aero-space has provided many benefits to our ability to understand the oceans. I believe the oceans will repay their knowledge debt on the engineering side. The “in this world” and in "our time” opportunities to exploit the oceans for military, economic, political, and humanitarian, as well as scientific advancement, are great and obvious. It is safe to predict that what we learn about useful and profitable practical work in the oceans and on the ocean fioor will assist, when the time comes, to do useful and profitable work in space. I believe we will learn that whether we work in the hostile environment of over-pressure on the ocean floor or under-pressure on the moon, this work we want to be will be very much like that we do on the earth's surface, in the streets, on the farm, in the oil or gas field, in the mines and on the construction job.
The economic and military importance of the oceans, their potential to solve world problems in food, fertilizers, and raw materials of all sorts, and the many countries of the world in addition to the space leaders—Russia and the United States—who have all that is necessary to exploit the oceans, insures that tremendous strides will soon take place in ocean engineering. The big question is will the United States establish a leading position?
The Congress, in its action on S. 944 and other ocean legislation and appropriations, will have a major role in the answers to the question of U.S. leadership. I would like to say a few words about the importance of U.S. leadership.
The oceans make up about 70 percent of the earth's surface. Of these oceans about 10 percent lies between the shoreline and 1,000 feet in depth, only another 10 percent lies between 1,000 feet and 12,000 feet; the remaining 80 percent lies between 12,000 feet and 20,000 feet, except for about 142 percent lies between 20,000 feet and the maximum known depth of 36,000 feet.
The 10 percent between the shore and 1,000 feet, the Continental Shelves, have a world wide total area equal in size to the continent of Africa. The Continental Shelves are accessible today and pecularily rich in all resources. The race to get to the Continental Shelves and establish the legal rights that go with occupancy is on. England, Canada, Japan, France, Italy, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Holland and, others, as well as Russia, are in the race. A new continent has been opened up for the first time since the discovery of the Americas. What we do now will affect our position on that new continent, just as what England, France, Spain, Portugal, Holland, and Sweden did after the discovery of the Americas affected their position in the New World.
Ocean development offers the same sort of opportunity for government, industry and science collaboration that was offered in the past by canal, railway, mine, agriculture, highway, and aviation development Government, industry and science collaborated for tremendous national advancement in these areas. We should be as responsive to today's challanges as our fathers were to yesterday's. The need in the oceans is more urgent. Any delay in the inland develop ments of years past would not have affected U.S. sovereignty over resources within our national boundaries. Delay may cost us important loss of rights or sovereignty forever in the confused legal tangles of the oceans.
Ocean development offers great opportunity for international cooperation in solution of world problems today and in tomorrow's exploding population. The chain from nutritious diet—to sound health—to education—to strong free government is a clear one, and the United States has a big stake in this chain. The oceans have the capacity to feed the hungry, directly, or through land fetrilization, and thus start that chain moving in the diet-poor countries around the world.
The interplay between military and nonmilitary ocean development is so complete that ocean engineering offers great opportunities for transition from military to economic development and back to military, if necessary. This may be helpful if a better world permits reductions of military expenditures which in turn create economic problems.
Finally the oceans not only can pay their way--they are paying it. In the years 1961–62 and 1963 the total Federal expenditures in nonmilitary oceanography were approximately $375 million. During those same years approximately $800 million was paid into the Treasury of the United States from the lease of oil rights in national waters. A great deal more was paid into the treasuries of coastal States. This ocean return to the taxpayer, and it can also come from the Great Lakes, is uniquely rewarding among government-supported programs. Such a rewarding program should be encouraged.
This committee is met to consider specific legislation to stimulate and encourage a strong national ocean program for military, economic, political, humanitarian, and scientific growth.
I believe it is very important to recognize the difference between the ocean program and the space and defense programs that have commanded so much of our attention and support in recent years.
Both space and defense are essentially programs conceived and executed by the Federal Government. There is no direct State government participation. Science and industry support Federal Government defense and space on a contract basis.
In the oceans there will be Federal programs for defense and other purposes but there will also be State programs to develop and protect their ocean or Great Lake industries. Furthermore, there will be industry programs not related to either Federal or State efforts. Today there are ocean engineering programs by industry which are under the pressure of competition to move faster than related Government programs. Such a situation is difficult to imagine in either space or defense. In the oceans, science, both basic and applied, will be working with industry and State government, as well as Federal Government.
The partnership between government, science, and industry will be a more equal and a more independent one than has been the case in space or defense. In addition to the entrance of State as well as Federal into the government picture, the participation in Federal agencies is much broader than in space or defense. Navy has a total ocean interest; Army and Air Force are also involved. Furthermore, there are vital interests in Interior for commercial and sport fisheries, Bureau of Mines and Geological Survey. Commerce is heavily involved with Coast and Geodetic Survey. HEW, AEC, Treasury (for the Coast Guard) and NSF and Smithsonian are also involved. Coordination within the Federal Government, has required the Inter-Agency Committee on Oceanography. The advent of ocean engineering is requiring even greater coordination in the Federal Government.
Coordination between Federal and many State interests will be required to prevent expensive duplication or gaps. Industry coordination will be involved in resolving conflicts between petroleum/gas, mining, fisheries, shipping, and recreation industries.
This adds up to a far more difficult coordination effort than has been required in space or defense. It involves a far greater number of participants, each with a greater degree of independence. The oceans have a tremendous potential-military, economic, political, scientific, and humanitarian. To exploit this potential rapidly and efficiently involves a difficult coordinating effort but a very rewarding one.
A study by representatives of Federal and State Government, science, and industries to define, at least initially, national objectives, would appear to be the cornerstone on which sound programs to achieve these objectives might be built
Once national objectives are defined and national programs for their achievement spelled out, the organization required to coordinate the implementation of these objectives and programs should be more clear to us.
There have been comparable problems of Federal, State, science, industry cooperation and coordination on a basis of equal partnership in the past. Out of these efforts grew our railroads, our waterways, our mining industry, and our aviation industry. Going further back in history, the settlement of the New World was accomplished by the combined efforts of government, science, and industries in many Old World countries. It will pay us to look back and reapply the methods that advanced these tremendously important national achievements and avoid the mistakes and doubts that slowed them down.
I believe S. 944, as a vehicle for developing a broad and efficient national ocean program, deserves your most serious consideration, I have pointed out what I think are problem areas. I certainly am unable to suggest legislation to accomplish the solutions. But I feel sure this Congress can start the ball rolling in the right direction and your consideration of S. 944 is a good takeoff point.
I believe S. 944 was introduced by your chairman to focus your attention on the problems and no one has shown a greater interest and concern for national accomplishment in the ocean area than you, Senator Magnuson.
Thank you very much, Mr. Chairinan and members of the committee, for the privilege of expressing my views.