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16 November 2017

Defending U.S. Government Employed Earth and Space Scientists

Earth and space scientists work in key positions throughout the federal government. As civil servants, atmospheric scientists at NOAA, seismologists at the USGS, and hydrologists at the EPA– and frankly all other agency scientists – work to help fulfill their agencies’ missions and safeguard the health, economy, and security of all Americans. That’s why it’s so troubling to witness measures taken by some agencies to silence or even discredit federal …

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14 November 2017

Thoughts from the Geoscience Alliance on National Native American Heritage Month

By Diana Dalbotten (Director of Diversity and Broader Impacts, St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, University of Minnesota); Nievita Bueno Watts (Director, McNair Scholars Programs, University of Northern Iowa); and Antony Berthelote (Hydrology Department Head, Salish Kootenai College) In November, the United States recognizes the significant contributions the first Americans have made to the establishment and growth of the U.S with National Native American Heritage Month. Writing this as members of the …

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3 November 2017

4th U.S. National Climate Assessment: Reinforcing the Scientific Consensus

Volume 1 of the Congressionally mandated 4th U.S. National Climate Assessment (NCA) was released earlier this month. Led by scientists working at NOAA, the Climate Science Special Report (CSSR) is the work of many of the nation’s most accomplished climate scientists. Used as a core blueprint used to inform the public and craft public policy decisions to address climate change, the report is a rigorously evaluated document that has gone …

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31 October 2017

EPA’s Advisory Panel Announcement Robs Americans of a Critical Resource

In a disappointing move this afternoon, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt confirmed his plan to disallow EPA grantees from serving on scientific advisory panels. This forces highly qualified scientists to choose between pursuing their science or serving on the Science Advisory Board (SAB) and the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC), undermining the ability of the EPA to fulfill its purpose to ensure “that all Americans are protected from significant risks …

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9 October 2017

Earth Science and Human Activity: Taking Action to Avert Catastrophe

By Linda Rowan, AGU Societal Impacts and Policy Sciences (SIPS) Focus Group President, and Director of External Affairs, UNAVCO Inc. Earth science captures the public’s attention when a natural disaster strikes, when natural resources are needed or when Earth’s environment faces a threat. As the Earth science community prepares to celebrate Earth Science Week from 8-14 October 2017, with a theme of Earth Science and Human Activity, there has been …

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3 October 2017

Reflections on World Space Week 2017

By Larry Paxton, AGU Space Physics and Aeronomy Section President and Head of Geospace and Earth Science Group at The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory The human race is beginning to take its first tentative steps off the planet Earth. As we become a spacefaring civilization, we will not only explore space, but we will endeavor to use space, just as we use the resources of earth. We will, …

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19 September 2017

World Ozone Day and the Success of the Montreal Protocol

September 16, 2017 was the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. In fact, September 16, 2017 marked the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the Montreal Protocol. The protocol was aimed at regulating the production and use of chemicals that contribute to the depletion of Earth’s ozone layer. It entered into force on January 1, 1989, and has demonstrated the ability of the world’s nations to come together to solve an …

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12 September 2017

Taking Radical Leaps in How We Train Early Career Scientists: A Cue from the 25-year Anniversary of Mae Jemison’s Space Journey

By Jasmine Crumsey, Ph.D., AGU Council Member, and Visiting Postdoctoral Scholar in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at Cornell University. “The overwhelming challenges we need to face today can’t be solved through incrementalism . . . What actually holds us back? Why aren’t we doing bigger things? The first answer is people and the perception of who has the solution.” – Dr. Mae Jemison, TEDArchive Talk: Want Interstellar Travel? Build Interdisciplinary …

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7 September 2017

Reflections On the 1900 Galveston Hurricane, Hurricane Harvey, and the Increase in Extreme Weather Events

By Ramesh P. Singh, Ph.D., AGU Natural Hazards Focus Group President, and Chapman University Professor of Earth System and Remote Sensing On 8 September 1900, the town of Galveston, Texas, close to Houston, was hit by a category 4 hurricane with strong winds of 135 miles per hour and storm surges up to 15 feet high. As a result, more than 10,000 people were killed and more than 3000 buildings …

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5 September 2017

Reflections on Voyager’s 40th Anniversary and the Future of Space Exploration

By Christina Cohen, Ph.D., AGU Council Member, AGU Space Physics and Aeronomy Section President-elect, and Member of the Professional Staff at the California Institute of Technology On the 40th anniversary of the Voyager mission it is impossible not to marvel at how far a human-built machine (with less computing power than the typical smart phone) has traveled. Voyager is the quintessential explorer, going into unknown realms and dutifully transmitting its …

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