From the President’s Office – 3/22/2012
Today, I testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science to discuss the FY13 federal science budget for the National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In my points, I reiterated the extreme importance of science to our nation as we are reliant upon the ocean for our national defense, food and economic security. I stressed that we are also a science dependent nation whose economy has grown dramatically since WWII thanks to the academic, university-based research enterprise, which continually challenges the best minds through open competition and the peer-review process.
I also made it clear that we are concerned with NOAA’s struggle to manage its earth observing satellites. Because of these difficulties, NOAA’s extramural research, ocean and coastal programs, were taking some significant hits. If it appears that there is no clear path to resolve increasing satellite costs for design, construction, operations and maintenance, we proposed other models for the committee to consider. I closed by expressing that while I understood the economic crisis we are facing in this country, there is an essential need for the continuance of federal support for basic research at NSF, for this country to continue to be competitive internationally, and remain in a leadership position. You can read my entire written testimony here. And for the latest on the budget debates, continue reading in the congressional news section below. The way things are going in Washington these days, my guess is that this is going to be a permanent weekly section that will get longer as the year progresses.
I hope you have an enjoyable weekend. I am planning to spend some time outside as the weather in Washington continues to be just delightful and the Cherry Blossoms are extraordinary this year.