« PreviousContinue »
} The authorized appropriation of $40,000 for the fiscal year 1937 was included too late in the deficiency bill, and was lost in conference.
This estimate covers the same amount for the fiscal year 1938. ! Mr. O'NEAL. Doctor, you did not receive the $40,000 deficiency that was asked for last year?
Dr. FINCH. No, sir; we did not.
Dr. Finch. Yes, sir. · Mr. O'NEAL. May I ask in general just what the provisions of that
bill were? Was it mandatory that you proceed to investigate lignite and subbituminous fuels?
Dr. Finch. Yes, sir; it was, the idea being that the very low grade coals that underly the surface of a very large part of the United States might be better utilized. We think that can be done.
Mr. O'NEAL. Lignite and subbituminous coal of this character is used in only two places in the United States, is it not-in Denver and North Dakota?
Dr. Finch. Perhaps those are the two principal places. But it is used a great deal locally, for instance, in Colorado Springs, where subbituminous coal is the principal fuel. It has been used in large quantities in the Criple Creek mining district and in other districts. · Mr. O'NEAL. Except for that local use is it not probable the lignite would not be used until the coal deposits are nearly exhausted? In other words, what is the utility for such an investigation, if you care to answer that question?
Dr. Finch. The utility of it is to enable those coals to complete with coals from distant places. For instance, in North Dakota they import anthracite coal at high prices from Pennsylvania, although they have coal of their own that should be used.
Mr. O'NEAL. Your purpose is to discover a deposit or to experiment with the use?
Dr. FINCH. With the use. The deposits are well known. It is largely a question of converting them into a better form for use. Mr. O'NEAL. You have done none of that up to the present time? Dr. Finch. Yes, sir. We have done some experimentation.
Mr. O'NEAL. Will you please tell us something about that to show us why that amount of money is desirable to spend? In other words, what is expected to be gained by that? Do you mean the method of burning it, or what do you mean by its use?
Dr. FINCH. There is one method of improving the coals upon which considerable experimentation has been carried on, showing those coals can be improved by carbonization, which is a method of increasing the carbon content.
Mr. O'NEAL. By treatment of those coals you might make them better fuels?
Dr. Finch. Yes, sir. Another method is to convert them into gas which can be used for the development of power.
Mr. O'NEAL. How much was appropriated for that purpose?
Dr. FINCH. $100,000 for 3 years; $40,000 for the first year in order to get the plant and building in operation.
Mr. O'NEAL. You built a plant?
Mr. O'NEAL. With this $40,000 is it contemplated a structure will be built or will it be used merely for testing purposes?
Dr. Finch. No, sir; the structure will have to be provided, or some existing building utilized, and laboratory equipment purchased out of the $15,000 estimated for supplies.
Mr. O'XEAL. As I read the bill, under section 3 of Public, No. 591, the statement is (reading]:
There is hereby authorized to be appropriated out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, the sum of $100,000 for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this act, the above amount to be expended over a period of 3 years, as follows: $40,000 to be expended in the fiscal year ending June 30, 1937; $30,000 to be expended in the fiscal year ending June 30, 1938; and $30,000 to be expended in the fiscal year ending June 30, 1939.
Do you feel that under that provision of Public, No. 591, you are authorized to expend over $30,000 during the fiscal year 1938
Dr. Finch. On the assumption that the program has been delayed 1 year the $40,000, of course, was provided for the first year of operation and can no doubt be used to provide equipment with which to work.
Mr. O'NEAL. But the amount is definitely specified. Does your Bureau consider that you have the legal right to expend over $10,000 for the year 1938?
Dr. Finch. It could be appropriated for the purposes defined in the act, Public, No. 591, I should think. The Bureau is authorized to do such work under its organic act.
Mr. LEAVY. The fact that the bill fixed the expenditures by fiscal years and fixed $40,000 for the fiscal year 1937 is to be taken into consideration. Do you think, even if we appropriated the $40,000 for the fiscal year 1938, that you would have authority under that bill to spend it?
Mr. O'NEAL. I do not quite get your statement.
Mr. LEAVY. Your question was that even if we appropriated $40,000 under the authority granted by that bill, is there not quite a legal question as to whether or not they would have the right to spend more than $30,000 for this fiscal year?
Mr. O'NEAL, I think it could not be appropriated.
Mr. FITZPATRICK. You can put it in there by amendment to extend the time, to spend that $40,000 to July 1, 1938. So that would give you the authority.
Mr. O'NEAL. I think your legal staff would better look into that, Doctor, because I believe there is a point there that is very questionable.
Mr. LEAVY. I just wondered what argument or what reason was advanced for striking this $40,000 appropriation from the deficiency bill last year. It was lost in conference.
Dr. Fisca. Ind simply because it was not presented in time to be discussed on the floor before the appropriation. Wasn't that it?
Vir. IEDGES. There was no explanation as to why it was eliminatedi. The amendment was put in in the Senate; when it came to conference the conference committee took it out.
Vir. LLAV). I just wondered where it originated
Vir. H Dors. It was added in the Senate. The bill had passed the House. That is, the enabling act was not approved until after the det:riency bill had been reported by the House committee. So the authorized appropriation of $40,000 for 1937 was added in the Senate as an amendment.
Mr. O'NEAL. Dr. Finch, as to this appropriation for testing fuel, practically all of your testing of fuel appropriation is for tests made for the Government? Is that correct?
Dr. Finch. Yes, sir; it is.
Mr. O'NEAL. But for the lignite investigation, Doctor, that will be lignite and subbituminous material owned by private interests? Is that correct?
Dr. FINCH. Yes; that is correct.
Mr. O'NEAL. To your knowledge, has the Government any lignite deposits or subbituminous deposits on any of its Government-owned lands?
Dr. Finch. Well, I would have to look at the Geological Survey maps to answer that question accurately.
Mr. O'NEAL. You say most of it is in the hands of private capital?
Dr. FINCH. Yes, sir; in privately owned land. I do not think there is much likelihood of any great development of it on the public domain.
INCREASE IN APPROPRIATIONS FOR TESTING FUEL SINCE 1928 Mr. O'NEAL. Doctor, I notice this appropriation is much larger than it has been at any time since 1928, except for 1936. For instance, in 1935 it was $97,000. What has caused the large increase in this appropriation in this particular item?
Dr. FINCH. Chiefly the very large increase in the mining business and the necessity for fact finding and technological experimentation for the benefit of the industry and to enable it to grow, also the necessity for finding methods of utilizing lower-grade mineral deposits, reducing costs when prices for products are low, and making new or better products.
DISTRIBUTION OF EXPENDITURES, 1937 Mr. O'NEAL. Which mining industry seems to call for your services more than others? Is it coal?
Dr. FINCH. I think perhaps coal does, because coal production is the largest of our mineral industries.
lir. O'NEAL. I mean the proportion of amount of service in your Bureau. Is more done on behalf of coal or on some other mineral?
Dr. FINCH. Coal investigations are proportionately the largest of our activities.
Mr. O'NEAL. Fifty percent of the entire work would be with coal, would it?
Mr. Hedges. Including the safety work and services to Government it might be as much as 50 percent. There is greater demand for safety work in the coal mines than in metal mines and quarries, although work in those fields as well as in petroleum has increased greatly in recent years. The following figures were furnished later:)
Estimated expenditures, fiscal year 1937
About $125,000 annually is expended in services to Government relating to fuel parchases and the construction and operation of fuel burning plants.
Mr. ()'NEAL. I notice in this item of testing fuel in the increases contemplated you ask for three new assistant chemists, two new junior chomista, two new laboratory helpers, and two new scientific aides. Is there any explanation for those specific services?
Dr. FINCH. That covers the organization for the work on lignite and wubbituminous coals.
Mr. O'NEAL. I notice there is $5,000, approximately, for temporary field employees, being an increase in that item, and $5,000 for supplies and materials, and $10,000 for educational, scientific, and recreations equipment, all increases. Is most of that increased work due to come out of this $40,000?
Dr. FINCHI. Yeg; entirely so.
Mr. O'NEAL. All of those increases are for this lignite investiga tion? You will not increase your forces for the ordinary work?
Mr, poes. No, sir.
NAL. And you will not increase the amount for travel supplies, and things like that?
Mr; Il paes, No, sir.
STORED OIL SUPPLIES
Wri JONSON. Your department received some additional funds las ver for deing statistical work with reference to the conmillion of oil and the amount of oil that is stored, and collecting ******** with anfernce to the oil industry?
Nile les, sir; that is correct. 116 EN I wonder if you hare made any investigation, and, It is boutin Tom e art on that inrestigation and have you
rom the towni*?) of that informatien 1 Milli o ner publication.
liath limite una de end of the fiscal year. to sportives
Wetare men in the field * H ARA W e
sel There are many hundress * ... how
week has been going oL. ** * W ***,
rine resr ard ready for s
ag resources through the prevention of waste in the mining, quarrying, metallurical, and other mineral industries; to inquire into the economic conditions affectag these industries; and including all equipment, supplies, expenses of travel and ubsistence, and the purchase, not to exceed $12,000, including exchange, operaion, maintenance, and repair of motor-propelled passenger-carrying vehicles for fficial use in field work, including not to exceed $24,700 for personal services in he District of Columbia, $270,860: Provided, That no part of this appropriation nay be expended for an investigation in behalf of any private party.
Dr. Finch, will give us an explanation of the language and estimates n this paragraph?
Dr. Finch. Investigations of mining, milling and metallurgical Oractices are supported by this appropriation. Major activities nclude laboratory tests and investigations of problems in ferrous and conferrous metallurgy and ore dressing; tests of representative ores o determine suitable beneficiation methods; studies of mining and nilling methods and costs, and of ground movement and subsidence is affecting mining operations. The work is carried on at various xperiment stations as well as by engineers in the field.
Innovations in hard-rock mining equipment and practice are tried ut in a new testing adit at Mount Weather, Va., and data of value o metal miners obtained. The recently established station at Boulder City, Nev., enables the Bureau to enlarge its program of electronetallurgical research that is especially significant at this time because of the prospect that cheap electric power will soon be available as a yproduct of Government irrigation and flood-control projects.
Results of fundamental research in Bureau Laboratories find comnercial application in improved metallurgical practice that conserves rreplaceable resources by reducing metallurgical losses. Many levelopments of recent years that have made possible utilization of ow grade or complex ores had their beginnings in Bureau investigaions. Data on mining and milling methods and costs assembled and orrelated by the Bureau assist operators to increase efficiency and educe costs.
DISTRIBUTION OF ESTIMATE The break-down of estimates and appropriations under this item 3 as follows: ppropriation 1937.---
---- $250, 860 ncrease requested: Experimental tunnel.-
$10, 000 Electrometallurigcal investigations.----