NASA program to track greenhouse gas is canceled (Update)

May 10, 2018
A chunck of ice falls from the Perito Moreno Glacier, at Los Glaciares National Park, near El Calafate in the Argentine province of Santa Cruz, on March 10, 2018

A NASA program that cost $10 million per year to track carbon and methane, key greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming, has been cancelled, a US space agency spokesman said Thursday.

The end of the program—called the Carbon Monitoring System (CMS)—which tracked sources and sinks for carbon and made high-resolution models of the planet's flows of carbon—was first reported by the journal Science.

"Now, President Donald Trump's administration has quietly killed the CMS," the report said, describing the move as the latest in a "broad attack on climate science" mounted by the White House.

The journal said NASA "declined to provide a reason for the cancellation beyond 'budget constraints and higher priorities within the science budget.'"

It also quoted US space agency spokesman Steve Cole as saying there was no mention of the CMS in a budget deal signed in March, which "allowed the administration's move to take effect."

Cole, responding to a request for comment from AFP, said Trump proposed cutting the CMS project and four Earth science missions last year.

After much deliberation, Congress decided they wanted those four space missions to be funded, writing them into the budget bill they passed in March 2018, he said.

But since CMS was not among them, it was cut as proposed, Cole said, describing the entire process as a joint effort by lawmakers and the executive branch.

Existing grants would be allowed to finish but no new research would be supported, he said.

Trump has already announced the US pullout from the 2015 Paris climate accord, a deal signed by more than 190 nations to slash polluting emissions from fossil fuels.

Cole told AFP that Trump has proposed cancelling another Earth science mission, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3 (OCO-3), for next year, though it did receive funding for fiscal year 2018.

According to Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of Tufts University's Center for International Environment and Resource Policy in Medford, Massachusetts, the CMS cuts jeopardize efforts to verify the emission cuts agreed to in the Paris climate deal.

"If you cannot measure emissions reductions, you cannot be confident that countries are adhering to the agreement," she told the journal Science.

Canceling the CMS "is a grave mistake."

Cole, however, said in an email that the "winding down of this specific research program does not curb NASA's ability or commitment to monitoring carbon and its effects on our changing planet."

He said a new ecosystem carbon-monitoring instrument, called GEDI, is set to launch to the International Space Station later this year.

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Steve 200mph Cruiz
4.7 / 5 (14) May 10, 2018
Why aren't we allowed to measure things?
doogsnova
3.9 / 5 (9) May 10, 2018
We are doomed. Thanks mostly to cowardly ignorant politicians and corrupt corporations which continue to pollute the planet. The world's current population is now over 8.85 billion, and growing at about 100 million per year or slightly more. Along with the permafrost melting and releasing methane, we humans are at least 75% responsible for the unnatural climate change, the increase in CO2, and the destruction of the environment, the rainforests, and the pollution of the oceans and waters with plastic waste, chemicals, and discarded pharmaceuticals. There really is no need to spend $10 million per year. I can tell you without a doubt, methane and CO2 will continue to increase, as long as the unrestrained global population continues to grow, as well as our demand for food and livestock, which continues to spread nitrogen fertilizers and pesticides into the soil and the water. The increasing dead zones and the overfishing will guarantee that the oceans will be fished empty by 2050.
Da Schneib
4.5 / 5 (15) May 11, 2018
The Trumpster Fire is afraid of CO2.
outersphere
4.2 / 5 (10) May 11, 2018
Ignorance is bliss.
TechnoCreed
5 / 5 (7) May 11, 2018
I am not worry. Jim Bridenstine, the new administrator of NASA will, in a little more than 2 years, be sent into orbit with a blustering kick in the but and we will not hear of him ever again.
angus143
3.7 / 5 (6) May 11, 2018
Why don't the signatory countries, of the Paris agreement, collectively fund an extensive climate research program??
Steve 200mph Cruiz
4.3 / 5 (6) May 11, 2018
Angus,
Why don't we create jobs here in America?
Porgie
1.6 / 5 (7) May 11, 2018
Thanks for the common sense decision.
nrauhauser
4 / 5 (9) May 12, 2018
Our children and grandchildren will never forgive us for this. We've known for decades, the warning signs have been obvious since Katrina, and here we sit, heads in the sand.
leetennant
4.5 / 5 (10) May 12, 2018
Just when you thought we hit peak stupid
TrollBane
4.3 / 5 (6) May 12, 2018
It's even dumber than a Syfy cancellation.
snoosebaum
1 / 5 (2) May 12, 2018
maybe Karl Marx can help
aksdad
1 / 5 (2) May 12, 2018
Yeah, too much sinister speculation from the climate conspiracy theorists.

Here's a what-if for you. What if NASA is returning to its original mandate of aeronautical and space science? Scope-creep and the consequent budget-creep that plagues every federal agency are at the heart of the burgeoning federal budget that grows faster than inflation, faster than the growth of the population, and now consumes 1/5th of the entire economic output of the United States. Just for the federal budget, not including state and local government budgets.

https://www.white...019.xlsx

It makes sense for NOAA to take over the Carbon Monitoring System, if they want to pay for it (from our taxes). It makes no sense for NASA to do so.
Scolar_Visari
4.1 / 5 (9) May 12, 2018
NASA's mission has always included study of the Earth, and it was never meant to be exclusively limited to, "aeronautical and space science". Per the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, the agency's first stated objective was, "The expansion of human knowledge of phenomena in the atmosphere and space".

I'm not sure where people keep getting the impression otherwise, as NASA's broad Earth sciences mandate has literally been reality since NASA first existed. Indeed, the first successful American weather satellite was a 1960 NASA payload, and the DoD has been operating weather satellites since before that.
Steve 200mph Cruiz
5 / 5 (3) May 12, 2018
Precisely Visari,
Planetary science includes the Earth. It's also in the freaking name
leetennant
5 / 5 (3) May 13, 2018
It's even dumber than a Syfy cancellation.


Now I can use "they cancelled The Expanse" instead of "they cancelled Firefly".
Scolar_Visari
5 / 5 (3) May 13, 2018
Technically, NASA's budget has separate Earth Science and Planetary Science sub-categories, though all such items covered under NASA's Science budget category undoubtedly have overlap in terms of technology and personnel.

Skylab was a particularly powerful example of this, as it had an extensive suite of Earth observation equipment and a large Solar observatory.
Scolar_Visari
4 / 5 (4) May 13, 2018
@leetennant
Now now, Netflix and Amazon series weren't a thing when Firefly was left to die after a single season, and television seems to have a lot more money for widescreen format SFX heavy programs today than it did when Capt. Mal & Company had to resort to criminal activities to fund their misadventures. Fan support nonetheless got them a movie, and The Expanse has had a considerable following with online services that SyFy's first-airing only rights could not take advantage of.

Also: The Roci is armed. Nearly out of ammo, of course, but I wouldn't say no to the rotating barrels of a Martian PDC in the hopes it was dry. Serenity had to literally hang Jayne out of the cargo bay if it wanted a weapon, which made corporate negotiations more problematic.
FieryFly
4.2 / 5 (5) May 13, 2018
Will America elect Trump again, or will it elect someone new.. I think Trump will not get reelected.. the damage he does to the science programs is short lived.. the damage he has done to friendly countries will take time to heal. All the other damage he has done to other groups will be repaired.. $10 million in funding is not big deal.. really.. a group of like minded individuals with deep pockets could fund this project.. with cooperation from NASA.. and skip out on the need for Federal funding, oversight.. or cancellation.
mbee1
2.3 / 5 (3) May 14, 2018
The program is being replaced with another called Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3, which in turn will be replaced in 2022 with Geostationary Carbon Cycle Observatory. Basically the story as written is a lie.
mbee1
2.3 / 5 (3) May 14, 2018
Sorry about the multi posts, apparently you cannot delete a comment even with edit which is a bug they should fix.
humy
5 / 5 (5) May 14, 2018
Why aren't we allowed to measure things?

Because morons like Trump don't want us to know the inconvenient truths against their beliefs.
mbee1
2.3 / 5 (3) May 14, 2018
humy , did you bother to look up the replacements over at NASA? The current program is being replaced by better data methods and the current program contract extends until the system is in place. The only thing being lost is the truth thanks to the news .
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (3) May 14, 2018
Seems pretty chickenshit to me. What're they afraid of, we'll find out they were wrong and stupid? Oh, wait, we already knew that. All they can do is screw up the science by breaking the data series. And we already knew they are chickenshits too.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (2) May 14, 2018
The program is being replaced with another called Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3, which in turn will be replaced in 2022 with Geostationary Carbon Cycle Observatory. Basically the story as written is a lie.
Oh but wait, seems OCO-3 was cancelled too. Now, who's lying again? You deniers never quit. And you are most definitely chickenshit.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (4) May 14, 2018
And when you get spanked by Science magazine you stay spanked. What do you think, nobody's gonna measure it so they won't find out you're lying? Seriously. Somebody go pee on the Trumpster Fire's Big Mac. Oh, wait, they already did.

http://science.sc...586.full
EnricM
5 / 5 (1) May 14, 2018
Why aren't we allowed to measure things?

Because they could yield actual results and the Orange Goblin in the White House doesn't want that.
EnricM
not rated yet May 14, 2018
Why don't the signatory countries, of the Paris agreement, collectively fund an extensive climate research program??


You mean like the IPCC or any of the EU programs, or the programs of each of the countries?

Did you thought that only NASA does research?
FieryFly
3 / 5 (2) May 14, 2018
was first reported by the journal Science.
"Now, President Donald Trump's administration has quietly killed the CMS," the report said. So is Phys org reporting fake news.. because it appears it is..

CMS will be canceled.. by discontinued funding.. not ordered by the loss of funding ordered by the President.. but its being replaced by another newer more advanced carbon detection program called Orbiting Carbon Observatory - 3 OCO-3.

January 10th 2018. The Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3 (OCO-3) is installed on the Japanese Experiment Module-Exposed Facility (JEM-EF) of the International Space Station (ISS) to observe the complex dynamics of the Earth's atmospheric carbon cycle. The OCO-3 payload is designed to collect the space-based measurements needed to quantify variations in the column-averaged atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) dry-air mole fraction, XCO2, with the precision, resolution, and coverage needed to improve the understanding of surface CO2 sources.
antigoracle
1.8 / 5 (5) May 14, 2018
OH NOSE!!!!
Now, what "data" will NASA cook in order to propagate their Globull Warming LIES?

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