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Maurice H. Stans, Secretary
Robert M. White, Administrator


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Federal Plan for
Marine Environmental




Robert M. White


Richard E. Hallgren, Chairman

Donald P. Martineau

Department of Commerce Cdr. Jack E. Geary

Department of Defense Frank E. Clarke

Department of the Interior
Capt. David A. Webb

Department of State
Capt. Robertson P. Dinsmore

Department of Transportation
Thomas M. Beasley

Atomic Energy Commission

Morris Tepper

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Albert P. Crary

National Science Foundation
William 1. Aron

Smithsonian Institution
T. K. Treadwell (Observer)
National Council on Marine Resources and

Engineering Development
David A. Lawhead (Observer)

Office of Management and Budget
Carl H. Savit (Observer)

Office of Science and Technology

Robert E. Morrison, Secretary


February 1971


This Federal Plan is the first to be developed by the Fed. eral Coordinator for Marine Environmental Prediction. The Plan is being published to provide the Executive Branch with a coordinated, overall summary of Government Marine Environ. mental Prediction (MAREP) Services and of relevant research and development programs to improve services in MAREP. Such Services include timely predictions of the states of the ocean, its living resources, and the adjacent overlying atmos. phere which affect man's activities, interests, and well-being; also included are forecasts, warnings, and data summaries and studies issued for the benefit of commerce, navigation, fish. eries, offshore drilling and mining, recreation, defense, and other marine activities.

On November 7, 1969, the Vice President, as Chairman of the Marine Science Council, assigned a lead agency role to the Secretary of Commerce for the coordination and planning of Federal civil programs in marine observations and predictions. Because of the interactions between programs dedicated to support civil interests and the marine environmental activities of the Department of Defense, close liaison is maintained with that Department to ensure that elements of Defense activities are included, jointly coordinated, and planned with the civil MAREP program.

The principal tasks of coordinating MAREP activities and of preparing and maintaining the Federal Plan are performed by the Interagency Committee for Marine Environmental Pre. diction. This Committee was established on March 4, 1970.

The Interagency Committee for Marine Environmental Prediction and its subgroups conduct systematic, continuous reviews of basic and specialized requirements, services, and relevant research in MAREP. Currently, two long-range Federal Plans are being developed under the auspices of the Committee: (1) A Plan for Collection, Exchange, and Dissemination of Data in Real-time for Marine Environmental Prediction Services; and (2) A Plan for Improvement of Marine Environmental Pre. diction Techniques. Long-range specialized plans in other im. portant areas of MAREP that need improvement and coordina. tion are also contemplated.


This Plan covers programs for FY 71 and FY 72 of all participating Federal agencies.

The first section of the plan identifies objectives and goals toward which planning and coordination of MAREP Services are directed, followed by descriptions of the Federal and international activities in marine environmental prediction and related programs, and a summary of fiscal data. Next, the Basic and Specialized MAREP Services are each presented from an operational point-of-view, along with the relevant research programs that will contribute immediately and in the long term to the improvement of individual Services.

Raket W White

Robert M. White
Federal Coordinator for
Marine Environmental Prediction

Needs and Objectives

Marine Environmental Prediction (MAREP) Services have been initiated and efforts are being made to improve them for governmental and nongovernmental needs and in recognition of the growing numbers of citizens concerned with the marine environment, both for pleasure and livelihood. The term "marine environment" is intended, insofar as this Plan is concerned, to embrace the deep ocean, the coastal zone, and the Great Lakes.

Many interests are focused on the oceans because of the economic potential of both living and nonliving resources. Considerable recent concern has been generated, both nationally and internationally, regarding the deteriorating quality of our marine environment, and control mechanisms proposed have called for extensive monitoring capabilities.

Oceans, at times, can be a hostile environment for men and equipment that are engaged in activities on, in, or near them. The MAREP Services are developed to aid men in making optimum use of the environment through judicious planning of their activities in the interest of protecting lives and property from undue exposure to hazardous conditions. Records show that 249 U.S. flag vessels in the merchant and fishing vessel categories alone were lost in the past 5 years from foundering, capsizing, or sinking which were the result of flooding caused by encountering storms and other adverse environmental conditions.

A broad spectrum of national defense operations have registered requirements for accurate and timely MAREP Services. The MAREP objectives of the United States can also be furthered through participation by this Nation in international programs that include various aspects of MAREP.

The MAREP Services are also applicable to activities in public recreation, including bathing, surfing, and boating. During 1970, it was estimated that 40 million people took part in recreational boating activities involving 8.5 million registered

recreational boats in the United States. In particular, the coastal warning system, tide predictions, various radio warnings to boaters, and general products of marine meteorology are valuable to public recreation.

In view of the foregoing, the goals for Federal efforts in MAREP are:

To develop an integrated environmental
monitoring system that will satisfy effectively
the needs for physical, chemical, and biologi-
cal data from oceanic and contiguous regions
to support service-oriented programs and to
facilitate effective control of environmental
To provide an integrated program for marine
prediction and information services including
timely warnings of hazardous environmental
conditions—both natural and manmade-on
the high seas, in coastal waters, and on the
Great Lakes for the protection of life and
To provide assessment and predictions of the
distribution and abundance of the living ma-
rine resources of principal importance to the

United States. The Federal program for MAREP Services is envisaged as being supported by the interlocking systems with functions performing the following:

Sensing or data acquisition;
Data collection and relay by means of tele-
Data processing and product formulation,
product and services dissemination; and

Data archiving. In each of these systems, expansion and improvements are planned in order to achieve the goals established. Relevant research and technology development are now in progress and are to be expanded for the purpose of improving existing Services and of meeting new demands for marine environmental prediction.

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