Multiple Use of the Gulf of Mexico
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The three principal users of the Gulf of Mexico, the Oil and Gas, Fishing and Shipping Industries generate employment for thousands of people on and around the Gulf of Mexico. The Oil and Gas Industry, the newcomer to the Gulf of Mexico, in 1969 produced oil valued at $1,065,000,000 and gas valued at $670,000,000 while the Fishing Industry caught fish valued at $166,500,000. The Shipping Industry in 1968 moved 447,367,145 tons of cargo in and out of the Gulf of Mexico ports in 805,956 vessel trips. Petroleum and petroleum products amounted to 49.55 per cent of the carge at the 19 deep water ports. All three industries have grown and expanded during the past ten years in spite of conflicts, real or imaginary. Continued growth with minimum conflict and the protection of the environment is certainly the object of all users of the Gulf of Mexico. The purpose of this compilation is to develop a better understanding of the requirements and activities of the co-users of the Gulf of Mexico as well as to bring into better focus the contribution of each separate resource to the total economy. This discussion will primarily be concerned with that portion of the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of the United States but will not be limited exclusively to that area.