The Trump Administration and key Republican members of Congress have argued for a “re-balance” of NASA’s portfolio toward exploration. Let other agencies like NOAA conduct research into Earth science and global change.
However, it doesn’t appear Trump is remotely interested in giving NOAA the tools to even do that. In fact, he is proposing deep cuts in the agency.
The Trump administration is seeking to slash the budget of one of the government’s premier climate science agencies by 17 percent, delivering steep cuts to research funding and satellite programs, according to a four-page budget memo obtained by The Washington Post.
The proposed cuts to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration would also eliminate funding for a variety of smaller programs, including external research, coastal management, estuary reserves and “coastal resilience,” which seeks to bolster the ability of coastal areas to withstand major storms and rising seas….
The OMB outline for the Commerce Department for fiscal 2018 proposed sharp reductions in specific areas within NOAA such as spending on education, grants and research. NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research would lose $126 million, or 26 percent, of the funds it has under the current budget. Its satellite data division would lose $513 million, or 22 percent, of its current funding under the proposal.
The National Marine Fisheries Service and National Weather Service would be fortunate by comparison, facing only 5 percent cuts.
The story explains that not only would NOAA be hobbled in conducting research, but that cutbacks would jeopardize public safety by limiting the agency’s ability to protect the country against severe weather.
Read the full story at The Washington Post.