NASA Budget Woes Paint Bleak Future for Earth Science
Date: 03 May 2012 Time: 09:33 PM ET
A new report on the state of NASA's Earth sciences program warns that future Earth-observing missions could be in jeopardy due to tightening budgets, launch failures, and changing mission priorities that may force projects to be delayed or cancelled outright.
The report from the National Research Council (NRC) found that the nation's Earth sciences capabilities are beginning a rapid decline, as older, long-running missions come to an end, and new missions are not yet available to replace them.
"The projected loss of observing capability will have profound consequences on science and society, from weather forecasting to responding to natural hazards," Dennis Hartmann, a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington in Seattle, said in a statement. "Our ability to measure and understand changes in Earth's climate and life support systems will also degrade."
Glenn A. Walsh, Project Director,
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