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Weathering the budget storm.

Embodied in the $407 million request (down by $2 million from fiscal year 1985) for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are shifts away from geological hazards surveys, landslide research and side-looking airborne radar. The FY '86 focus shifts to mineral resources, which would receive a $1 million boost, and the mapping of the Exclusive Economic Zone, for which a $3.2 million increase would be earmarked. USGS is also requesting $2 million for the Deep Continental Drilling Project.

Among the programs that would not survive the 20 percent proposed reduction of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) budget are the $6.5 million Undersea Research Program and the $3.8 million federal research program at Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory. Other oceanic research would be cut by $2 million, and $12 million would be taken from atmospheric and hydrological studies. Funds for hardware are up in the proposed $931 million NOAA budget, including a $3 million increase for the development of an upper atmosphere wind profiler and $2.5 million more to modernize weather technology. NOAA has decided to fund only one polar satellite instead of two, saving $11 million. But the agency is also asking for $18 million toward two additional geostationary weather satellites, bringing the number in development to five, in case a satellite should fail, as one did last summer.

Most of the $4.4 million increase in the National Science Foundation's (NSF) earth sciences budget goes for studies of the continental lithosphere. The NSF budget calls for 4 percent increases in both oceanic and atmospheric studies. The U.S. Antarctic Research Program funds would rise by $9 million to $120 million.

All earth-related research at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration is slated for modest increases. The largest jump is $78 million toward the construction of the upper atmosphere satellite scheduled for launch in October 1989.
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Title Annotation:federal budget and earth-related research
Author:Weisburd, Stefi
Publication:Science News
Date:Feb 9, 1985
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