Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Authorizing the International Conference on Water for Peace.
LAST YEAR I announced that the United States would convene a great international conference to deal with the world's water problems.
Today I am signing into law a bill that authorizes the conference and funds to defray its cost.
Next May in Washington, experts from many nations will gather to examine a common necessity: providing adequate, clean, and dependable water supplies for their people.
In the past, many of man's efforts to solve his water problems failed because he did not possess the tools, the technology, or the understanding to do the job. That is no longer the case. The question now is whether the competence he possesses can be translated into action where it is needed.
I believe that question can be answered "yes"--if experts from throughout the world can meet and match skills with needs--and if the nations join in a global effort to help one another.
The International Conference on Water for Peace will deal with some of the oldest water problems, and some that have been aggravated by modern life. It will study:
--relief from drought and protection from floods;
--the waterborne diseases that kill 5 million people every year;
--the pollution of rivers, lakes, and streams, a major problem for the developed and less developed nations alike.
I do not expect that simple answers to these problems will emerge from the conference. But I do believe that by sharing what we now know with each other, we shall take the necessary first step toward providing generations to come with the water they will need to exist.
Note: As enacted, the bill (S.J. Res. 167) is Public Law 89-799 (80 Stat. 1507).
The statement was released at San Antonio, Texas.
Lyndon B. Johnson, Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Authorizing the International Conference on Water for Peace. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/238486