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Ocean Enterprises: The Ocean and the Economy in the 1990’s

Ocean Enterprises: The Ocean and the Economy in the 1990's

Ross, D.A., J. Fenwick, M.A. Champ, and R. Knecht
In: Halsey, S.D. and R.B. Abel (eds.), Coastal Ocean Space Utilization. Proceedings of the International Symposium on Coastal Ocean Space Utilization, Elsevier Press, pp. 369-371, 1990 WHOI-R-90-006
In the late 1980’s, less than 1% of the resources consumed annually in the United States came from the ocean. The U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) proclaimed in 1983 gave the United States exclusive jurisdiction over ocean resources out to 200 n. mi. This extensive new zone adds over 3.9 billion acres of resource potential, more than doubling the “territorial size” of the United States. The EEZ offers many opportunities to improve the national economy of the United States. Nevertheless, the potential rewards from the development of ocean resources by the private sector have been greatly inhibited by the risks of candidate projects. Each opportunity or action is laden with different types of risk: technical, economic, environmental and political. Ocean Enterprises is a concept to explore and develop these resources. Among the areas that show the most promise for development are: marine mining of coastal heavy minerals, ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC), offshore waste treatment plants, mariculture (fish and shellfish) and platforms for air and space operations