[Comment on “COSOD: A critique”]



In his critique of the Conference on Scientific Ocean Drilling (COSOD), Roland von Huene claims that COSOD presented an ‘unbalanced’ viewpoint with emphasis on too many deep-ocean objectives at the expense of continental-margin drilling problems. Although we both fully agree that a future program of scientific ocean drilling is an essential component of research in the earth sciences, von Huene questions whether the emphasis on the deep-ocean basins in the COSOD report reflects a general consensus of the earth science community. Any subset of a community is, of course, suspect as a true sample of the entire community. However, I believe that the 150 scientists from nine different countries who participated in COSOD and in the compilation of the report do, in fact, reflect the mainstream of scientific drilling interests as presently constrained by available and potentially available drilling technology. In order to demonstrate that this is so, I shall first comment on von Huene's ‘Historical Review’ of scientific ocean drilling, expand on the organizational aspects of COSOD, and finally comment on the scientific recommendations.