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INTERNATIONAL DECADE OF OCEAN EXPLORATION
MONDAY, JULY 29, 1968
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met at 10:15 a.m., pursuant to call, in room 1334, Longworth House Office Building, Hon. Alton Lennon (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.
Mr. LENNON. The subcommittee will be in order.
The subcommittee is meeting this morning to receive testimony on House Concurrent Resolution 803, introduced by the Chair and 15 other members of the subcommittee. (H. Con. Res. 803 and an agency report :)
H. CON. RES. 803
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
JULY 26, 1968 Mr. LENNON (for himself, Mr. Ashley, Mr. DOWNING, Mr. Dow, Mr. KARTH,
Mr. HATHAWAY, Mr. CLARK, Mr. St. ONGE, Mr. Jones of North Carolina, Mr. HANNA, Mr. Mosher, Mr. PELLY, Mr. Keith, Mr. SCHADEBERG, Mr. DELLENBACK, and Mr. POLLOCK) submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION Whereas the Congress finds that an unprecedented scientific and
technological readiness now exists for exploration of the oceans and their
Whereas accelerated exploration of the nature, extent, and dis
tribution of ocean resources could significantly increase the food, mineral, and energy resources available for the benefit of mankind; and
Whereas improved understanding of ocean processes, would en
hance the protection of life and property against severe storms and other hazards, would further the safety of maritime commerce, would directly contribute to the development of coastal areas of the Nation, would benefit the Nation's fishing and mineral extractive industries, and would
contribute to advancement of a broad range of scientific disciplines; and
Whereas realization of the full potential of the oceans will re
quire a long-term program of exploration, observation, and study on a worldwide basis, utilizing ships, buoys, aircraft, satellites, undersea submersibles, and other platforms, advanced navigation systems, and expanded data processing and distribution facilities; and
Whereas the inherently international character of ocean phe
nomena has attracted the interest of many nations; and
Whereas excellence, experience, and capabilities in marine
science and technology are shared by many nations and a broad program of ocean exploration can most effectively and economically be carried out through a cooperative effort by
many nations of the world; and Whereas the United States has begun to explore, through the
United Nations and other forums, international interest in a long-term program of ocean exploration: Now, therefore, be it
1 Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate 2 concurring), That it is the sense of Congress that the United 3 Stạtes should participate in and give full support to an In4 ternational Decade of Ocean Exploration during the 1970's 5 which would include (1) an expanded national program of 6 exploration in waters close to the shores of the United 7 States, (2) intensified exploration activities in waters more 8 distant from the United States, and (3) accelerated develop
9 ment of the capabilities of the United States to explore the
1 oceans and particularly the training and education of needed 2 scientists, engineers, and technicians.
SEC. 2. It is further the sense of Congress that the 4 President should cooperate with other nations in (1) en5 couraging broad international participation in an Interna6 tional Decade of Ocean Exploration, (2) sharing results and 7 experiences from national ocean exploration programs, (3) 8 planning and coordinating international cooperative projects 9 within the framework of a sustained, long-range international 10 effort to investigate the world's oceans, (4) strengthening 11 and expanding international arrangements for the timely 12 international exchange of oceanographic data, and (5) pro13 viding appropriate technical and training assistance and fa14 cilities to the developing countries and support to interna15 tional organizations so they may effectively contribute their
16 share to the International Decade of Ocean Exploration.
SEC. 3. It is further the sense of Congress that the
18 President in his annual report to the Congress on marine 19 science affairs pursuant to Public Law 89-454 should trans20 mit to the Congress a plan setting forth the proposed partici21
pation of the United States for the next fiscal year in the 22 International Decade of Ocean Exploration. The plan should 23 contain a statement of the activities to be conducted and 24 specify the department or agency of the Government which 25 would conduct the activity and seek appropriations therefor.
EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT,
AND ENGINEERING DEVELOPMENT,
Washington, August 15, 1968. Hon. EDWARD A. GARMATZ, Chairman, Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: I am pleased to have the opportunity to comment on H. Con. Res. 803, to express the sense of the Congress with respect to an International Decade of Ocean Exploration during the 1970's.
As noted in my July 29 statement before the Subcommittee on Oceanography, we are pleased indeed to support this resolution.
The International Decade of Ocean Exploration during the 1970's—is a plan for intensified, sustained international study of the sea and exploration of marine resources. The concept was first set forth by President Johnson in his State of the Union address when he said, “This year I shall propose that we launch, with other nations, an exploration of the ocean depths to tap its wealth, its energy and its abundance."
The oceans of the world are an important source of food and minerals for a rapidly developing world society. Nations of the world have long collaborated in probing the ocean environment, but we still have a very poor understanding of the potential of the oceans. Now, however, an unprecedented scientific and technological capability exists to advance both the exploration of the sea and the harvest of its resources. Moreover, this Nation has a new legislative mandate written by the Congress—to advance our effective use of the sea for the benefit of mankind, and a new determination—by the Executive Branch—to implement that charge.
The very size, complexity and variability of the marine environment suggest a more intensive effort to understand the sea if we are to gain the needed knowledge in a reasonable time. Moreover, excellence, experience, and capabilities are shared by many nations. The President has thus proposed that this historic and unprecedented venture be undertaken cooperatively by all of the nations of the world having interest. We have invited these various nations to contribute their particular expertise, to assume a share of the responsibility for the program, and to disseminate the results of their discoveries to others.
In light of a long history of cooperative expeditions—such as the International Geophysical Year and the Indian Ocean Expedition-you may well ask, “What is new ?”
First, this proposal anticipates a sustained, long-term exploration of the sea, planned and coordinated on a global basis, in contrast to the sporadic efforts of the past, developed project by project.
Second, the Decade is oriented as much toward delineation of marine resources as toward science. It is thus more than a marine IGY.
Third, we anticipate more deliberate coordination of the activities of the many interested international organizations, such as the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, Food and Agriculture Organization, World Meteorological Organization, etc., so that world wide exploration will not be splintered among competing agencies.
Fourth, we anticipate an intensified effort to assure the systematic collection of data and the prompt dissemination of the data, with particular attention to adoption of internationally agreed-upon standards that will maximize the value of the data.
Fifth, we would focus attention on participation by a larger number of countries, especially those which have a maritime geography but which may have previously lacked interest, trained manpower, or capabilities to explore the oceans, even near their own shores.
Thus, during the Decade all nations would be encouraged to develop their capabilities for exploration, to expand their own national programs, to share with other nations experience acquired from these national programs and to participate in international programs. Oceanic data—the basic commodity of exchange would be obtained both unilaterally and through multilateral programs.
In short, the International Decade of Ocean Exploration builds on a strong foundation of scientific interest and experience in a worldwide program to study the sea. There will be benefits to science. But there will also be benefits to eco nomic development and to international understanding.