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Origins and Purpose

Laws that Established NOAA and NOAA Predecessor Agencies

1807 - An Act to provide for surveying the coasts of the United States. This initial legislation led to the formation of the United States Coast Survey.
[Act of Feb. 10, 1807, Sess. II, ch. 8, 2 Stat. 413-14 (1807)]
 
1870 - Joint Resolution to authorize the Secretary of War to provide for taking meteorological Observations at the military Stations and at other Points in the Interior of the Continent, and for giving Notice on the northern Lakes and Seaboard of the Approach and Force of Storms. This resolution led to the formation of a Weather Service under the United States Army Signal Service.
[Act of Feb. 9, 1870, Sess. II, Res. 12, 16 Stat. 369 (1870)]
 
1871 - Joint Resolution for the Protection and Preservation of the Food Fishes of the Coast of the United States. This resolution established the office of Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries.
[Act of Feb. 9, 1871, Sess. III, Res. 22, 16 Stat. 593-94 (1871)]
 
1890 - An Act to increase the efficiency and reduce the expense of the Signal Corps of the Army, and to transfer the Weather Service to the Department of Agriculture. This act established the Weather Service as a civilian Bureau.
[Act of Oct. 1, 1890, Sess. I, ch. 1266, 26 Stat. 653-55 (1890)]
 
1965 - Reorganization Plan No. 2 of 1965 established the Environmental Science Services Administration within the Department of Commerce.
[Reorg. Plan No. 2 of 1965, 3 C.F.R. xxx (1965), reprinted in 5 U.S.C. app. at 1517 (1994), and in 79 Stat. 1318-20 (1965), and in 30 Fed. Reg. 8819-xx (1965)]
 
1969 - Stratton Commission Report. Under the chairmanship of Julius A. Stratton, the Commission on Marine Science, Engineering and Resources investigated a broad array of marine problems, then made recommendations in the form of Our Nation and the Sea. A Plan for National Action.
[Our Nation and the Sea. A Plan for National Action.
Report of the Commission on Marine Science, Engineering and Resources. United States Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., 305 pp., January 1969]
 
1970 - Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1970 established the Environmental Protection Agency and set forth the components of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and described its role in improving the understanding of marine resources.
[Reorg. Plan No. 3 of 1970, 3 C.F.R. xx (1970), reprinted in 5 U.S.C. app. at 1551-56 (1994), and in 84 Stat. xxxxxxx (1970), and in 35 Fed. Reg. xxxxxxxx (1970)]
 
1970 - Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1970 established the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
[Reorg. Plan No. 4 of 1970, 3 C.F.R. xx (1970), reprinted in 84 Stat. 2090-93 (1970), and in 35 Fed. Reg. 15627-30 (1970), and reprinted with amendments in 5 U.S.C. app. at 1557-61 (1994)]
 
1970 - Executive Order No. 11564 transferred certain functions from the Department of Defense and the Department of Transportation to the Secretary of Commerce as part of the implementation of Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1970.
[Executive Order No. 11,609, 3 C.F.R. xx (1970), reprinted in 1970 U.S. Code Cong. and Admin. News 6296, and in 35 Fed. Reg. 15801 (1970)]
 
1986 - Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1970 as amended. Last date amended 1986.
[Reorg. Plan No. 4, 5 U.S.C. app. at 1557-61 (1994)]
 
1987 - A History of NOAA This compilation was done by Eileen L. Shea.
[A History of NOAA, Being a Compilation of Facts and Figures Regarding the Life and Times of the Original Whole Earth Agency. Compiled by Eileen L. Shea, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 44 pp., 1987]
 

The NOAA Logo (Seal)

Mission and Goals

Laws that Establish NOAA's Authority

Several major statutes or laws form the legal basis for the programs of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration:

Offices


NOAA Information Resources

More NOAA History


U.S. Ocean Reports

The purpose of this section is to trace the history of reports on the status of United States oceanography. Each entry contains title, author if available, publisher, date of publication, link to full-text if available, and/or link to the full report record in the NOAA Libraries' Catalog.

Title: Report of the Committee on Oceanography of the National Academy of Sciences 1929
Author: Bigelow, Henry
Publisher: United States National Academy of Sciences
Publication Date: 1929
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

Title: Oceanography 1951 : a report on the present status of the science of the sea
Author: The Committee on Oceanography of the National Academy of Sciences
Publisher: National Academy of Sciences, National Research council
Publication date: 1952
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

Title: Effective Use of the Sea
Publisher: U.S. President's Science Advisory Committee, Panel on Oceanography
Publication Date: 1966
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

Title: Our Nation and the Sea: A Plan for National Action (also known as the Stratton Commission Report)
Publisher: U.S. Commission on Marine Science, Engineering, and Resources
Publication Date: 1969
Full-text of the report
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

Title: An Ocean Blueprint for the 21st Century: Final Report
Publisher: U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy
Publication Date: 2004
Full-text of the report
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

Title: U.S. Ocean Action Plan: The Bush Administration's Response to the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy
Publisher: Council on Environmental Quality, Interagency Ocean Policy Group
Publication Date: 2004
Full-text of the report
NOAA Libraries' Catalog record

  Last modified:    Thu, 28-Feb-2013 21:02 UTC Library.Reference@noaa.gov
 
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