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office, although one of his problems is to find out just what the role of technology can be to improve the urban situation.
Mr. MOSHER. Well, he will be dealing with labor bosses and city political bosses. That is a difficult area.
Mr. DADDARIO. If we could follow that just a bit, Dr. Seaborg, that would appear to me to be one of the relatively simple cases where coordination between two agencies does fit very well. But take all the things that you are doing. You take desalting, which is now in the Office of Saline Water; thermal wastes, which is dealt with by the Federal Water Pollution Control Administration; medical applications of radioisotopes which you have referred to at NIH.
Now, who judges all of these projects and who comes up with determinations about where they ought to be done and who ought to put the greatest effort into them? Is this a place where we can learn a lesson about how better to put our house in order?
Dr. SEABORG. Well, I could have used our relationships with the Department of the Interior as another example of coordination, because we do have, and have had for a number of years, close coordination there in the nuclear desalting effort.
We don't quite have a joint office, but we have had a close collaboration with the Office of Saline Water in the Department of the Interior, and have worked with them on the various projects that we have under consideration in the various parts of the world.
Mr. DADDARIO. Well, is it presently satisfactory? Can you see the problem proliferating so that it will become more complicated and make it more difficult to use this simple coordinating mechanism?
Dr. SEABORG. I think that no matter what the overall mechanism was for coordinating science, in examples like the ones that I have cited, including our work with the Department of the Interior, we would need this bilateral coordination and collaboration. This would still be required, I am sure, because of the details and the complexity of the projects that are involved.
Mr. DADDARIO. Well, certainly we will always need coordinating mechanisms. But part of the management is not just coordinating programs and activities once they are underway, or as they get underway
Dr. SEABORG. Yes.
Dr. SEABORG. And how you find the places where there might be coordination, perhaps.
Mr. DADDARIO. That's right.
Dr. SEABORG. Yes. Well, I think that an increased role for the Office of Science and Technology, and in cases like the collaboration between the Department of the Interior and the AEC, a role for the Federal Council for Science and Technology would
be very helpful. And I believe the Federal Council for Science and Technology probably could play a bigger role in identifying areas of the type that we don't now see, but of the type that might usefully involve collaboration or coordination of this sort.
Mr. DADDARIO. Well, we will take a simple case of an atomic plant, say on the Connecticut River, Haddam. Who has the responsibility for getting the information on stream ecology to allow for a decision to be made on waste heat discharges? How much should be allowed and who is in charge? How is that done?
Dr. SEABORG. Well, you used an example that is, you might say, a case where the question of responsibility is sort of in a state of transition.
The Atomic Energy Commission has, under the Atomic Energy Act, the responsibility for regulation with respect to radioactivity and the level of radioactivity in the effluents, and with respect to the area of nuclear safety. The Atomic Energy Act does not include and did not foresee a role for the AEC in the regulation of thermal effects.
The way this is handled now is regulation by a combination of State control and agencies of the Department of the Interior such as the Federal Water Pollution Control Administration and the Fish and Wildlife Service. These agencies are consulted by the AEC during its licensing procedures.
There is legislation in Congress now which the AEC supports that would spell out a better definition of just where the responsibility for regulation with respect to thermal effects should lie. And this includes a number of possibilities, but one bill, for example, places the control with local State agencies, but includes some coordination at the Federal Government level in the Department of the Interior.
Mr. DADDARIO. Who does the research necessary in this particular area so that we know these regulations are going to be properly applied, or so that the regulations can be formed from proper consideration of what the situation is?
Dr. SEABORG. So that we have the information that is required, the Atomic Energy Commission is supporting some research in this area, the effect of heated water on fish and aquatic life. But probably more research should be done on this.
This is a problem, I might say frankly, that has become recog. nized only very recently, and plans are evolving and need to be evolved in the future for dealing with it.
Mr. DADDARIO. I would imagine that when you say plans, that this should also include the management mechanisms through which this would be done.
Dr. SEABORG. Yes. And to illustrate the complexity of the problem, I should point out that the matter of thermal effects is of concern in a case of any plant that produces electricity through the thermal mechanim; that is, this includes fossil fueled plants. And the hope is that as the national picture evolves, that all plants would be subject to adequate regulatory mechanisms to take care of the problem.
Mr. DADDARIO. Dr. Seaborg, in your report you refer to the work that is being done in your Agency, and this amazing figure of “500 Pacific Oceans of petroleum," as a point of reference.
You are also concerned about the great impact of population. As all of this data is put together and as we begin developing our capabilities, should we not also recognize that this will put a tremendous strain on our governmental capability. This is probably as good a time as any to begin looking ahead: to what will develop through our scientific and technological activities, to the way which they will be applied and managed to use by our society.
Dr. SEABORG. Oh, I couldn't agree more. I think we should be doing more in the planning, if I interpret your question correctly, now on how society will accommodate to all of the scientific and technological developments that are coming along.
I might make a remark as a sort of humorous aside, about this 500 Pacific Oceans filled with high grade petroleum—and you stated it quite accurately, because I used this as a comparison to indicate how much energy there is in the heavy hydrogen of the world's waters. I have been quoted as saying the AEC is working on the production of 500 Pacific Oceans full of high grade fuel oil.
Mr. DADDARIO, That would create some pollution problems.
Mr. MOSHER. Dr. Seaborg, I am interested in one sentence—well, I am interested in all of your sentences for that matter. It is a very stimulating statement. I refer to this sentence on page 7:
But I believe that there is widespread public recognition that the idea of merging work on civilian and military applications remains valid and indeed compelling
Now, I assume that at that point you were talking about the AEC, specifically, and we all recognize that the AEC is unique among Goyernment agencies. Were you implying that that merging of work on civilian and military applications should be emphasized to a greater extent throughout the Government?
For instance, I believe I am historically accurate in saying that NASA would never have been created had not Congress been assured and the President insisted that NASA be a civilian agency.
Dr. SEABORG. Yes.
Mr. MOSHER. And then there is the recent Stratton report that goes out of its way to emphasize that the civilian work in the proposed NOAA should be separated from the work in the Navy.
Dr. SEABORG. Oh, yes. I didn't mean to make that broad an interpretation. I see that it could be read that way. I meant the civilian and military applications of nuclear energy.
I was thinking really of the continued validity of the philosophy behind the McMahon Act, going clear back to 1964, that there is value, and I think continued value, of tying together the peaceful and the civilian use of atomic energy and the military use in a civilian agency.
Mr. MOSHER. But you were not implying that this principle should be extended
Dr. SEABORG. Not at all. No; definitely not.
I just had reference to nuclear energy. And, of course, there are many cases where they just dovetail like this, like the development of nuclear weapons and the development of the peaceful nuclear explosives, the Plowshare program, so forth.
Mr. MOSHER. Mr. Chairman, for lack of time I won't ask another question at this point.
Mr. DADDARIO. Mr. Brown?
Mr. Brown. Dr. Seaborg, if you had to make a rough guess as to how the AEC's funds are divided between basic research and applied research and technology, what would you give as a rough figure?
Dr. SEABORG. Yes; I have those figures. And actually, they are accurately represented on table IV on page 22 of your committee print.
The AEC has a budget for the support of research in fiscal year 1969 of $420 million, of which $324 million is for the support of basic research, and $96 million for the support of applied research, and then about a billion dollars for the support of development. But that gets into, you know, our nuclear weapons and reactor development and things of that sort.
But in answer to your question, about $420 million for research divided $324 million for basic research and $96 million for applied research.
Mr. BROWN. Do you have any idea of what would happen in the event that there was a drastic change in the nuclear weapons field? For example, if we reached an agreement to cease the production of nuclear weapons with the Russians, do you have any idea of how that would affect the budget on the research items!
Dr. SEABORG. That wouldn't affect the $420 million very much. That would affect the $1 billion development.
Mr. Brown. But what kind of a management problem would that give you within the agency?
I presume that the operations are in some degree, at least related. In the same laboratories, for example, that there is a certain amount of basic research going on, and
Dr. SEABORG. Yes. The nuclear weapons work is at our Los Alamos Laboratory, N. Mex., and Livermore Laboratory in California. But both of these laboratories have a substantial amount of civilian research, basic research going on, in such areas as the Plowshare program, the peaceful use of nuclear explosives, and the controlled thermonuclear research, getting back to this 500 Pacific Oceans equivalent of high grade fuel, and biology and medicine, and at Los Alamos now, intermediate energy physics with a meson facility, and so forth.
Mr. Brown. But wouldn't you face a management problem with regard to those two laboratories, whether to close down the laboratories because a substantial segment of their work had been taken away, weapons production, let's say, or to increase the budget for the nonweapons related research, the peaceful or civilian applications in order to continue to carry the staff and the overhead that you have at these laboratories?
Dr. SEABORG. The impact of such a happy situation would be more on our contractor-operated industrial capability for the production of the weapons. And that is in other plants.
Of course, there would be some effect on the laboratories dependent upon what kind of an agreement we went into.
I would say for a number of years almost any agreement that you could contemplate probably would include research on future possibilities as a safeguard. It would be difficult for me to conceive of any agreement that didn't include that, at least for a number of years.
Also, the weapons laboratories—and in some ways that word "weapons" isn't any longer an accurate description of their function, because they are doing so many other things--are becoming increasingly involved with surrounding universities. And this is particularly true of Los Alamos, which is developing a relationship with many of the universities in the Mountain States area, and also to some extent,
with Livermore, which has a relationship with the Davis campus of the University of California in their applied engineering program which is really unique in a number of its aspects in this country.
Mr. Brown. Well, the thing that I am trying to get is whether or not an important mission of these laboratories might not be adversely affected as a result of a decision made in another area, and is there a mechanism or a process through which we could make sure this important mission was not overlooked in the total spectrum of scientific effort that is taking place as a result of what you might say almost an unrelated decision to cut out weapons production. Do you feel that there is such a mechanism that these functions would be protected under this kind of a circumstance?
Dr. SEABORG. Well, it would now, of course, be under the mechanism of the budgeting process through the executive branch and Bureau of the Budget, and so forth, and the subsequent congressional approval which would be based on initial recommendation by the Atomic Energy Commission.
Mr. Brown. Well, let me explore another aspect of this. This is just for the purpose of determining really what the mechanisms are.
You listed three very significant types of research which I would consider basic research, going on in the AEC; for example, the nuclear fusion business, which produced this 500 Pacific Oceans full of oil and work on these heavier chemical elements which you call the islands of stability.
Dr. SEABORG. Yes.
Mr. Brown. And the nature of the forces dominating the laws of matter, which I presume are the subnuclear forces ?
Dr. SEABORG. That is right, the high-energy physics program has that objective.
Mr. Brown. How do you make the determination as to the relative level of effort going into these three vitally important areas, and what is the effect on them of, let us say, an overall budgetary decision to set a ceiling on Federal expenditures? How are these programs affected?
Dr. SEABORG. Well, this is largely a management decision within our agency. And as the budget is cut back or a ceiling set, it has been a matter of decreasing the effort in these fields. Or in the case of the controlled thermonuclear research, holding it at a level rather than enabling it to have what we would call at this time a needed expansion.
In the case of the controlled thermonuclear reactions, there have been recent results in our laboratories, and perhaps even more especially in Soviet laboratories that have given rise to a good deal of optimism as to the future potential of obtaining this unlimited source of energy.
But we haven't been able to exploit these possibilities to the extent that we would like to due to budget limitations.
Mr. BROWN. Do you feel that the budget determinations in this case have fully recognized the tremendous potential significance of a breakthrough in this particular area?
Dr. SEABORG. Probably not.
Mr. Brown. Would you consider this to be in any way a defect of the organization of scientific decisionmaking in the Federal Government, or is there some other reason why it probably has not received the budgetary attention it should ?