A Case for the National Adoption of the Metric System

1567 Words7 Pages
America is on the cutting edge of almost everything, except for basic units of measurement. Every nation on earth has adopted the International System of Units, or metric system, as their official system of weights and measures, with the exception of Myanmar, Liberia, and the United States of America (“CIA World Fact Book,” n.d.). Throughout history, the metric system has proven itself as a reliable, and simple to use, decimal based system of measurement. In comparison, the United States customary system is overly complicated and requires extensive conversions to apply. Despite US efforts to go metric, many Americans and American corporations oppose metrication because they see the change as unnecessary or costly to implement. To support their claims, supporters of the metric system cite the system’s world-wide acceptance, easy conversions, and note the disasters that have occurred due to dual usage or confusion of metric and non-metric units. Successful implementation by the US government will no doubt be a challenge in the current economy. The change-over will require time, resources, and enforcement. Ultimately the investment will pay off by significantly increasing international compatibility and interoperability. Adaptation to the metric system will allow the United States to join the rest of the world in a standardized system that accommodates speed and efficiency. The metric system is designed with basic and logical units of measurement which mitigate the need for lengthy conversions. The International System of Units, or metric system, is commonly abbreviated as SI for short. The SI is a simplified and convenient system built on seven base units: meter, kilogram, second, ampere, kelvin, mole, and candela for measuring l... ... middle of paper ... ... for Sticking to Imperial Units. Retrieved from http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17350-nasa-criticised-for-sticking-to-imperial-units.html#.UoxULuLAETA Metric Conversion Act of 1975. Public Law 94-168, 94th Congress. Retrieved from http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/STATUTE-89/pdf/STATUTE-89-Pg1007.pdf NASA (1999). Mars Climate Orbiter Mishap Investigation Board Phase I Report. Retrieved from ftp://ftp.hq.nasa.gov/pub/pao/reports/1999/MCO_report.pdf Naughtin, P. (2009). USA Metric System History. Retrieved from http://metricationmatters.com/docs/USAMetricSystemHistory.pdf Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988. H.R.4848, 100th Congress. Retrieved from https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/100/hr4848#summary U.S. Food and Drug Administration (1993). Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition Office of Food Labeling. Retrieved from: http://www.fda.gov

More about A Case for the National Adoption of the Metric System

Open Document