Letter to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House on the Federal Water Resources Research Program.
Dear Mr. President: (Dear Mr. Speaker:)
Even before there was a United States, people of this land were using and developing its water resources. Over the years the nature of the problems has changed and the size and scope of the solutions has increased but our technology has kept abreast of the needs.
Today far greater demands are pressing upon both our water resources and the technology required to meet our varied water needs. Our streams and groundwater resources must meet the needs of nearly 200 million people for food, fiber and industrial processing. At the same time we have expected our streams to carry off the waste products of our homes, industries and farms. We must also protect our people from damaging floods such as those which have recently occurred along the upper Mississippi River.
A projection of our population growth over the next few decades could lead to the conclusion that very serious water shortages might be expected over much of the nation in the not far distant future. Pollution has already caused serious problems in many of our streams and lakes, and, with a growing population, pollution problems could extend to almost all of our water sources.
Such predictions must not come true. Our scientists and engineers will find solutions to meet these problems as they develop, if we maintain a continuing and effective research program. Earlier this year, I transmitted to you legislation expanding and extending one aspect of the water research program-desalting. Today I am pleased to transmit a report summarizing the Federal Water Resources Research Program for Fiscal Year 1966 prepared by the Committee on Water Resources Research of the Federal Council for Science and Technology.
The program is not large but it is vital. The total proposed expenditure for the 1966 Fiscal Year is only $101 million, less than one percent of the total national expenditure on water supply, water control and waste treatment. But the Committee is at work on the preparation of a long range research program of incalculable importance to our future. I am asking the Chairman of the Federal Council to press forward on the development of this plan.
We must be sure that our research effort is adequate to guarantee sufficient water for all our future needs. On this there can be no compromise. We must, also, strive through research to find a better basis for minimizing the damaging effects of water and to preserve and protect the natural beauty of our streams and lakes for the health and enjoyment of all our people.
LYNDON B. JOHNSON
Note: This is the text of identical letters addressed to the Honorable Hubert H. Humphrey, President of the Senate, and to the Honorable John W. McCormack, Speaker of the House of Representatives.
The report "Federal Water Resources Research Program for Fiscal Year 1966" is dated February 1965 (Government Printing Office, 10 pp.).
For the President's letter transmitting proposed legislation on the water desalting research program, see Item 143.
Lyndon B. Johnson, Letter to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House on the Federal Water Resources Research Program. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/241413