Science

GOP Tells NASA To Focus On Space, Forget Climate Change

By Donna Bellevue , Feb 21, 2017 02:54 AM EST
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The GOP tells NASA to stop meddling in climate science and just focus all its energy on space programs. The Republican Party, with the backing of the Trump administration, aims to largely restrict NASA's domain to space missions, and stops the space agency from discussing significant issues affecting Earth. However, despite all this, NASA steadfastly tweets urgent climate change information.

The recent restriction sounds ridiculous since NASA had created Earth Sciences Division to tackle issues such as climate science, including a weather information gathering system.The division, which gets $2 billion out of NASA’s $20 billion budget, is in danger of being dropped.

Science-averse Representative Lamar Smith, and Chairman of House Science, Space and Technology Committee, said during a hearing last Thursday, that he wants a “rebalancing” of NASA’s responsibilities. GOP tells NASA that more funds should go into space exploration. Smith explained that the US only has one agency that engages in space exploration, and therefore, every dollar of its budget must be spent on that, The Huffington Post reports.

The Republican representative also suggested that other agencies take over NASA's climate change research. However, it’s unclear which agencies would be willing to pick up the slack. The GOP has previously expressed disapproval with NASA's research on climate science, leading Congressional Republicans to seek deep cuts to climate research in 2015 and 2016.

Meanwhile, the new head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), climate-change skeptic Scott Pruitt, has mentioned to cut the agency's staff and fund, in line with Trump’s campaign to “get rid” of the agency. The EPA also received orders from Trump's office to refrain from tweeting information about climate change.

According to the Eco Watch, NASA continues to post daily climate change updates on Facebook and other social media platform, providing the public with frequent warnings about rapid global changes. According to experts, defunding NASA's climate science division would be a major mistake. When GOP tells NASA to stop research on climate change, it is clearly Trump's move that resonates with his campaign to label climate change as a hoax.

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