From the President’s Office – 4/23/2012
Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee approved the fiscal year 2013 Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations bill. The bill provides a $300 million increase for NSF, $68 million more for NOAA and a $15 million plus-up for Earth Science at NASA. Of course the devil is always in the details, which are highlighted below. The major difference between the House and Senate bills revolves around whether NASA should inherit NOAA’s budget and responsibility for the design and procurement of earth observing satellites. If NOAA retains this mandate, I anticipate major cuts to NOAA’s research and education programs. The House is scheduled to consider the bill when it returns from recess on May 8th.
On another note, I would like to congratulate the returning champions, Marshfield High School from Marshfield, Wisconsin, for their first place win at the 15th Annual National Ocean Sciences Bowl competition which was held last weekend in Baltimore, Maryland. It is pretty clear that the students from the Great Lakes certainly know ocean sciences! It was such an exciting and inspiring event. I am very proud of all twenty five teams that competed. They are all winners! Thank you to all of the volunteers and sponsors that made this special event possible. For more detailed information on the weekend, click here.
Today, the USA Science and Engineering Festival started here in Washington and runs until Sunday. This event aims to encourage the next generation of engineers and scientists, as well as to stimulate public awareness of the importance of science and math education. Ocean Leadership and three of our programs, the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, the Ocean Observatories Initiative and the National Ocean Sciences Bowl, will be participating in the Festival with an interactive exhibit (booth #3822) in Hall A at the Washington Convention Center. In addition, I will be participating in a side-career event at the Festival titled “Encounters with Scientists and Engineers” on Saturday. For more information, click here. It should be a lot of fun. Last year, several 100,000 people per day came to the event.
So, it is another weekend filled with ocean science here in the DC area. If you are in the neighborhood, I hope you will take the time to stop by the Festival. It looks like it will be a great event. I am sure it will be well worth your time and that of the people who are with you.