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In characterizing the 1970s as the "now or never" decade for meeting the challenge of environmental quality, President Richard Nixon has established a monumental goal for America and American industry. Looking only at the projected demands for metals, nonmetals, and fuels during the next 10 years we can see that achieving that goal and, at the same time, assuring our people continuing adequate supplies of minerals and energy at reasonable costs will take all the ingenuity--all the innovative ability--that our mineral and fuel industries can muster.
Not only must our ability to find new deposits of minerals and fuels at greater depths and in alien environments be significantly extended, but we must devise far better methods for extracting, processing, and utilizing these essential raw materials. National concern for environmental quality can be expected to govern virtually every facet of mineral exploration and development in the decade we have just entered.
Skilled, highly motivated, and intensively trained manpower represents an urgent industrial need. National concern only now is beginning to focus meaningfully on this critical aspect of the problem and, although the hour is late, there are indications that it may not be too late for the solutions we so desperately need.
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