i From World War I to the "Depression"
So far acos ncrn oursurvey of the eouti of the compre-
hensive-development concept, our enactments du g this
period merit notice. First is'paasage of the 1920 Federal Water
PoWer Act, 'the history of which encompasses many Of the
evbeits of the preceding period already touched upon. Next are
the provisions for the"308 Reporl;s. Morelimited in soopt i
the third, the attention paid to multiple uses and basin-ide
planing -inm ood-control legislation. F-inally comes the 19t8
authorization for the Boulder Canyon Project." ;
'1'H F~~Dai AL WATkE Powik ACi OF '1920.-The 20YeM
growth in recognition of the need for comprehensive dlevelop-
meinit had its impact upon the controversy over this licensing
system, designed to regularize federal permission for nonfederal
power development." Its history and provisions we have
Because of their significance hee, however, we shall repeat
certain aspects, of the license requirements included by Con-
gress. For example, the 1920 Act specifically required that the
project adopted be best adapted to a "comprehensive scheme of
improvement and utilization fortie .purposes of navigation,, o
water-power development, and of other beneficial public
uses." Similarly, preference among private applicants for a
license depends in part upon which has plans best adapted to
"It should also be noted that In 1920Congress authorized the furnishing
of water from ieclamation projects for other purposes than irrigation, in
certain cases. Act f February 25, 1920,41 Stat451, 48 U. S, 0. 521.
Act of June 10,920, 41 Stat. 1060, as amended by Act of August 26,; i
49 Stat 888, 16 V.. 8. 791a-825r.
See supr, pp. 271-289.
"g 10(a), 41 Stat. 101., This provision was derived from the General
Dam Act of 1910, which in turn was based upon President Theodore Roose-
velt's recommendations in the Rainy River veto message. See 45 Ooro. Nac.
5684 (1910). By 1985 amendment, the language of this provision was re-
stated to require that the project adopted will be "best adapted to a com-
prehensive plan for improving or developing a waterway or waterways for
the use or benefit of interstate or foreign commerce, for the improvement and
utilization of waterpower development, and for other beneficial public uses,
including recreational purposes." 5 10(a), 49 Stat. 842, 16 U. 8. C. 808(a).
develop, conserve, and utilize in the public interest the water
resources of the regie i.
M1 eover, the 1920 Act required that-whenever, in the judg-
ment of the C nommision,the "development of any 'project
should be undertaken by the United States itself," the Com-
mission shall not approve "any application for such project"
but shall cause necessary emiations to made, and sub-
mit its findings and recommendations to Congress concerning
"such project.'' In 1935, this provision was reworded to
require that, whenever in the judgment f thie Commission,
"the development of any water resources for public purposes
should be undertaken by the United States itself," the Com-
mission shall not approve any application "affecting such
development," but shall report to Congress the findings and
recommendations concerning "such development."
Important also is the broad'authority of the Commission to
make investigations and collect data concerning the "
utilization of the water resources in any region to0 be
developed, the water-power industry and its relation
to other industries and to interstate or foreign commerce,
and concerning the location, capacity, development cos,
and relation to markets of power sites, and whether the
power from Government dams can be advantageously
used by the United States for its public purposes.
Still broader is the Commission's investigative authority to
secure information asa basis for recommending legislation."
In connection with our examination of trends toward com-
prehensive development, it should be noted-that the Federal
Power Commission's "primary objective" in river-basin
7, 41 Stat. 1067, as amended, 16 U. S. C. 800 (a)
"5 7(b), 49 Stat. 842, 16 U. S. C. 800(b). Sen.RBep. No. 621, p. 44;
H. Rep. No. 1318, p. 24, both 74th Cong., 1st seas. (1985).
4(a), 41 Stat. 10665, as amended, 16 U. S. C. 797(a).
SSee supra, pp. 274-275.
STWENTY-aIGHTH AoNNUAL RIPOT Or THn FEDERAL POWER COM) SSION,
p. 48 (1948) ; H. Doe. No. 19, 81st Cong., let seas., p. 48 (1949).
has been to determine the potential hydroelectric values
in the major drainage areas of the country, and to be
sure that these. values are not lost as specific plans for
river-basin development are formulated by the con-
Moreover, the Act contains numerous provisions to assure es-
pecial protection of navigation interests."
"308 REPORTS."-In 1925, Congress directed the Army En-
gineers and the Federal Power Commission jointly to prepare
and submit an estimate of the cost of making examinations
and surveys of those navigable streams and their tributa-
ries "whereon power development appears feasible and practi-
cable." This was directed to be done with a view to formu-
lating "general plans for the most effective improvement of
such streams for the purposes of navigation and the prosecu-
tion of such improvement in combination with the most effi-
cient development of the potential water power, the control of
floods, and the needs of irrigation." The resulting list of
streams was submitted to Congress in 1927, and printed in H.
Doe. No. 308, whence the designation "308 Reports." By the
1927 River and Harbor Act, Congress authorized the prosecu-
tion of these surveys by the Army Engineers.& In 1935, it
directed that these surveys be supplemented by such additional
study or investigation as "necessary to take into account im-
portant changes in economic factors as they occur, and addi-
tional stream-flow records, or other factual data." 8 Surveys
of 191 streams had been completed under these authorizations
by June 30, 1949."
While these surveys have frequently been referred to as
"comprehensive," it should be noted that the stated statutory
See supra, pp. 276-277.
SAct of March 3, 1925, 3, 43 Stat. 1186, 1190. The Colorado River was
S60th Cong., 1st sess. (1927).
Act of January 21, 1927, 1, 44 Stat. 1010,1015.
SAct of August 30, 1985, 1 6, 49 Stat. 1028, 1048.
AlM.UAL REPOT or THm CHOI or ENGImEEBS, U. S. ABMY, p. 2647 (1948).
objective is improvement of streams "for purposes of naviga-
tion," and for the prosecution of such navigation improvement
"in combination with" development for power, flood control,
and irrigation. Thus, these surveys are concerned primarily
with navigation improvement in much the same way as the
Federal Power Commission surveys are concerned with power
MISSISSIPPI RIVER FLOOD CONTROL.-In legislating for the
control of floods in the Mississippi River, Congress in 1928 pre-
scribed requirements moving in the direction of basin-wide,
multiple-purpose planning." The Act directed the earliest
practicable submission of the "308 Report" for the Mississippi
River and its tributaries, and in addition specified that the
flood-control reports therein authorized must include: *
the effect on the subject of further flood control of the
lower Mississippi River to be attained through the con-
trol of the flood waters in the drainage basins of the
tributaries by the establishment of a reservoir system;
the benefits that will accrue to navigation and agricul-
ture from the prevention of erosion and siltage entering
the stream; a determination of the capacity of the soils
of the district to receive and hold waters from such res-
ervoirs; the prospective income from the disposal of
reservoired waters; the extent to which reservoired
waters may be made available for public and private
uses; and inquiry as to the return flow of waters placed
SAct of May 15, 1928, 45 Stat. 584, 33 U. S. C. 702-702m.
10, 45 Stat. 538, 83 U. S. 0. 702j. Suggestions of such provisions had
appeared in earlier legislation. In 1921, the Mississippi River Commission
was directed to survey the Atchafalaya, Black, and Red Rivers in Louisiana
and to specify a plan that "will give the greatest measure of protection to
the basins of said rivers from the flood water of the Mississippi River con-
sistent with all other interests of the lower Mississippi Valley." Act of
March 3, 1921, 41 Stat. 1354. In the same year, preliminary examinations
were authorized for the Yazoo River in Mississippi and the Calaveras River
in California in accordance with the provisions of the Act of March 1, 1917.
Act of July 29, 1921, 42 Stat 146; Act of August 18, 1921, 42 Stat. 171. In
1924, such preliminary examinations and surveys were authorized for a
jnumler of other streams. Act of May 31, 1924, 43 Stat. 249.
in the soils from reservoirs and as to their stabilizing
effect on stream flow as a means of preventing erosion,
siltage, and improving navigation.
BOULDER CANYONf PROJECr.-To retain continuity in our
chronology, we merely mention here the 1928 adoption of the
Boulder Canyon Project Act, saving discussion of its provisions
for later treatment in connection with development in particu-
From the "Depression" to Date
With the "depression" came a sharp stimulation of interest
in development of natural resources and their utilization in
projects built as public works. Throughout most of the subse-
quent period, there has been an acceleration in legislative and
administrative acceptance of the principles of comprehensive
planning and development.
TENNESSEE Vau~y, AuTHORmTr.-Passage of the unique pro-
visions of the Tennessee Valley Authority Act in 1933 marked
the single instance of legislative provision for unity of federal
development in a geographic area. We shall treat this legis-
lation in more detail later in our examination of development
in particular regiopg s
Puiauc-Wonx PRoJECTS.-The National Industrial Recov-
ery Act of 1933 directed the Public Works Administrator to
prepare a "comprehensive" program of public works which was
to include among other things control, utilization, and purifica-
tion of waters; prevention of soil and coastal erosion; develop-
ment of water power; transmission of electric energy; river
and harbor improvements; flood control; and certain drainage
improvements."- This Act, "with a view to increasing employ-
ment quickly," also authorized the President, "through the
Administrator or through such other agencies as he may desig-
See infra, pp. 460-463.
SSee infra, pp. 481-486.
SAct of June 16, 1983, 202, 48 Stat. 195, 201, 40 U. S. C. 402. The pro-
grani thus envisaged specifically excluded river and harbor improvements
unless "adopted by Cengress" or "recommended by the Chief of Engineers."