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Earth Science – NUQ – $ Down


Earth science budget cuts are inevitable

Kintisch 3/8 (Eli, writer @ ScienceInsider, http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2011/03/nasa-satellite-crash-complicates.html) JPG

The desired launch dates presume that Congress will approve the president's request to grow the agency's budget for Earth science in the next 4 years—from $1.8 billion to $2.3 billion by 2015. That may be wrong. Given the budget pressure, the $1.9 billion that President Barack Obama requested for the 2012 fiscal year "is the high point," speculates NASA earth science budget expert Art Charo of the National Academies' National Research Council. In particular, the House of Representatives has already approved cutting NASA's budget for the rest of 2011 by $600 million. Senate Democrats have said they want to cut it by $200 million. Neither has yet specified how the cut should be distributed across the agency's $18.7 billion budget. But in recent years, the earth science budget has gotten its lunch eaten by the manned spaceflight program. Given the animosity in the House toward anything that has the word "climate" in its name, it's hard to see any change in that dynamic. The crash of OCO in 2009 has already led to some brutal triage. To set up OCO-II, NASA was forced to cut other missions. In the 2012 budget rollout last month, for example, NASA announced it wished to curtail plans to launch CLARREO—a four-satellite constellation to measure tiny fluctuations in reflected energy from Earth, and DESDynI, a $1.6 billion mission to scan ice.


Earth science is being underfunded already
Svitak 11 (Amy, writer @ SpaceNews.com, 2/14/11, http://www.spacenews.com/civil/nasa-budget-frozen-presidents-request.html) JPG

Obama's proposal includes $1.78 billion for Earth science programs in 2012, some $160 million less than called for in the authorization act but still about $360 million more than the agency's current Earth science budget. NASA's overall Science budget — which includes Earth science, astrophysics, heliophysics and planetary science —would top $5 billion in 2012, a roughly $500 million increase over the current budget but less than previously forecast.
Budgets have forced cuts to earth science – there’s no funds
Svitak 11 (Amy, writer @ SpaceNews.com, 1/25/11, http://www.spacenews.com/civil/budget-uncertainty-muddies-nasa-procurement-picture.html) JPG

NASA’s Earth Sciences Division is also feeling the procurement pinch for some projects. If the continuing resolution is extended for the full year, Earth science programs would receive $1.42 billion, which is some $380 million less than the agency requested. All flight and nonflight programs funded in 2010 are proceeding, and no launch dates have been slipped for missions that are in the formulation or implementation phase, according to NASA spokesman Stephen Cole. However, Cole said NASA has deferred plans to ramp up work on a pair of missions that were identified as top priorities by the science community: Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice; and the Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory. “[W]e are endeavoring to keep the gate review milestones (transition to Formulation) but there is insufficient available funding to prepare fully for, or conduct, the planned ramp-up,” Cole said via e-mail Jan. 13.
Major earth science programs have got axed
Brinton 11 (Turner, staff @ Space News, 3/7/11, http://www.space.com/11050-white-house-nasa-earth-science-cuts.html) JPG

Even though NASA’s Earth science budget is slated to rise next year, the U.S. space agency has been ordered by the White House to shelve a pair of big-ticket climate change missions that just last year were planned for launch by 2017. With U.S. President Barack Obama under pressure to rein in federal spending, the White House eliminated funding for the Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory (CLARREO) and Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice (DESDynI) missions, Steve Volz, associate director for flight programs at NASA’s Earth Science Division, said in a Feb. 24 interview. The cuts came before the failed launch of the Glory satellite Friday (March 4), NASA's latest Earth-observing mission to study Earth's atmosphere, due to a rocket malfunctions. So the White House orders are unrelated to NASA's loss of the Glory satellite.

Earth Science – NUQ – $ Down


Major cuts to earth science already happened – its not on the chopping block
Whittington 11 (Mark, author of The Last Moonwalker, contributes articles to major newspapers, 2/26/11, http://old.news.yahoo.com/s/ac/20110226/us_ac/7949516_nasa_earth_science_missions_eliminated_by_obama_administration) JPG

Unarguably one of if not the highest priority missions the Obama administration has set for NASA is climate change research. So it is surprising news that two very high profile Earth observation missions have been scrapped for budget reasons. The missions are the Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory (CLARREO) and the Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice (DESDynI) missions, saving $1.2 billion between 2012 and 2015. Overall, not doing CLARREO and DESDynI would save about $2.4 billion through the rest of the decade. The Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory (CLARREO) would have launched two satellites in 2018 followed by another two satellites two years later. CLARREO would have gathered data on emitted and reflected energy in order to study long-term changes in the Earth's climate. Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice (DESDynI) was an Earth imaging radar and lidar mission to study formation of ice packs on the Earth's surface. NASA will not be forced to go back to the drawing board to figure out ways to do these missions more affordably. There may be, as one suspects, a political element to the decision to kill these programs in their infancy. Congress has been making noises about raiding the Earth science account at NASA to pay for the development of a space craft and a heavy lift rocket to send humans beyond Low Earth orbit. Eliminating the CLARREO and the DESDynI missions will make that maneuver all that much harder. The Obama administration has shrunk the amount of money that is available for raiding. Furthermore it has burnished its cost cutting bona fides by taking away missions that it really cares about.




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