Senate committee proposes less drastic budget cuts for NOAA

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 10:16 PM GMT on March 07, 2011

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Last month, the U.S. House of Representatives proposed a new budget (HR 1) for the remainder of the fiscal year that would slash funding of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) by $454 million. This would mean a draconian 28% cut for the National Weather Service, the agency entrusted to protect us from natural hazards such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods. Monday, the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee released a proposed alternative to HR 1 that would make a $110 million reduction to NOAA operations for the remainder of the fiscal year. Of the $110 million cut, $104 million was from earmarks that are no longer funded. This effectively only cuts the NOAA budget by $6 million, and would allow NOAA to continue its efforts through the coming tornado, flood, and hurricane seasons to help protect lives and property without suffering from crippling budget cuts.

Now is the time to mobilize to ensure adequate funding for NOAA, and the National Weather Service Employees Organization issued these recommendations in a letter posted on their website today:

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Assuming the Senate adopts this proposal, the effort goes to convincing House Leadership of the important work of the NWS and fully funding NOAA. At this important stage, we ask you to contact Congressmen John Boehner and Eric Cantor and respectfully request that they support the Senate's proposal for NOAA's budget. These congressmen hold the key to the future of the NWS.

To email or call Speaker John Boehner
http://www.speaker.gov/Contact/

To email or call Representative Eric Cantor
http://cantor.house.gov/contact/

You can also join the Protect the National Weather Service Facebook group, which was created for this cause. Our fan count is growing rapidly but we need more. We want Congress to take notice of how much support our fans have shown. Please share this message with your friends and ask them to click "like" directly on our page. We will have more information, some cool photos and interesting tidbits to share in the coming days.

Sample letters and talking points are available below. Please feel free to use these letters and also tailor them to the particular types of weather for your geographic area. The links below provide email addresses and phone numbers to help you in this effort.

Your support of the National Weather Service is greatly appreciated. You are making the difference in helping the agency continue their mission of saving lives and property. Thank you.


Dear Mr. Speaker (for Speaker John Boehner) OR
Dear Mr. Cantor (for Rep. Eric Cantor)

I am writing to ask you to support the Senate's proposal for NOAA's budget. This proposal will help NOAA and the National Weather Service continue the mission of saving lives and property.

The Senate's proposal includes responsible funding levels in stark contrast to the draconian cuts included in HR1. HR1 would have resulted in the following impacts on the National Weather Service:

* Reduced staffing at Weather Forecast Offices and River Forecast Centers would result in incomplete forecast production which could prove disastrous in a significant weather event. Even in the best of cases, it will still mean incomplete forecast production at WFOs that have major product workloads for aviation, marine, tropical and public services.

* This is going to have a negative impact on the economy and on almost every aspect of our daily lives. There will be a large scale economic impact on aviation, agriculture, and the cost shipping food and other products.

* Service backup of 24 Weather Forecasting Offices has never been tested and runs a very significant risk of a missed tornado, flood or severe weather warning. It is risking lives at the onset of both tornadoes and hurricane season. This is also doubling the area of responsibility for operations and adds the risk of degraded service delivery.

* The National Hurricane Center is not immune to these cuts as furloughs and staffing cuts will add strain to the program. The Hurricane Hunter Jet, which provides lifesaving data and helps determine a hurricane.s path, could also be eliminated.

* Information that is vital for weather modeling and accurate tornado watches and warnings will be reduced and in some cases lost. Reduced upper air observations currently made twice a day could be reduced to once every other day. Buoy and surface weather observations, the backbone of most of the weather and warning systems, may be temporarily or permanently discontinued.

Recent advances in aviation weather forecasting have resulted in as much as a 50 percent reduction in weather related flight delays. The Senate.s proposal for funding will help progressive programs such as these continue and may, in turn, prove beneficial to strengthening the economy.
For the safety of our citizens, the protection of property, and the large scale economic impact on aviation, agriculture, and commerce, I am asking you to vote in support the Senate.s proposal for NOAA's budget.

Sincerely,
Your Name

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I encourage all of you to make your voices heard and help preserve funding for NOAA and the National Weather Service.

You can call or email your U.S. Senator using this link: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information /senators_cfm.cfm

You can call or email your U.S. House of Representatives member using this link: https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml

The National Weather Service Employees Organization web site has talking points and sample letters (printable) you can use to contact your Senators and Representative.

Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulations
The U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power, chaired by Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-KY), will hold a hearing on Tuesday, March 8, 2011, at 10:00 a.m. in room 2123 of the Rayburn House Office Building. The hearing is entitled, “Climate Science and EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Regulations.” Full Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) and Rep. Whitfield have joined Democratic leaders in the U.S. House in authoring the Energy Tax Prevention Act (H.R. 910), a bill to block EPA’s controversial backdoor climate change agenda that would further drive up the price of energy for American consumers and job creators at a time when gas prices are already spiking and job creation remains weak.

The hearing is open to the public and press. Opening statements, witness testimony, and a live webcast will be available online at http://energycommerce.house.gov

Jeff Masters

Your Pot of Gold... (catilac)
is at the Atlantis Casino! Overlooking Reno at 6200 ft.
Your Pot of Gold...

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Quoting caneswatch:


Haha, how've you been? It feels so good to be back home.


Well, make sure you clean up your room. I heard you left it a big mess when you left.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Magnitude 7.2 earthquake hits northern Japan
4 mins ago

TOKYO – A magnitude 7.2 earthquake has hit northern Japan, shaking buildings in Tokyo and prompting the country's meteorological agency to issue a tsunami alert for the northeastern coast. There are no immediate reports of damage or injuries, but officials are still assessing the situation.

The meteorological agency says the quake hit at 11:45 a.m. local time Wednesday and was centered about 200 miles (300 kilometers) north of Tokyo at a depth of about 6.2 miles (10 kilometers).

It warned that a tsunami of about 20 inches (50 centimeters) would hit the coast around noon Wednesday, but that time passed without any reports of a wave reaching the shore.

There was a 6.3 magnitude aftershock shortly after the main quake.
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Evening all. Louisiana is really getting hit tonight again. Another tornado just west of me. Hopefully everyone there is all right.
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Quoting swampliliy:



Yeah, but it's funny, I only get half your name out and it's like shroooom- Road Runner being chased by Wiley Coyote.

Strange! :))


Not surprising. Big Grothar has been know to kick some serious *** up that way.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Ultrafast Laser 'Scribing' Technique to Cut Cost, Hike Efficiency of Solar Cells

ScienceDaily (Mar. 8, 2011) — Researchers are developing a technology that aims to help make solar cells more affordable and efficient by using a new manufacturing method that employs an ultrafast pulsing laser.

The innovation may help to overcome two major obstacles that hinder widespread adoption of solar cells: the need to reduce manufacturing costs and increase the efficiency of converting sunlight into an electric current, said Yung Shin, a professor of mechanical engineering and director of Purdue University's Center for Laser-Based Manufacturing.....

Link
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Quoting Grothar:


Should be soon, I hope. Run into any of my family?



Yeah, but it's funny, I only get half your name out and it's like shroooom- Road Runner being chased by Wiley Coyote.

Strange! :))
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Quoting Grothar:


Thanks, and you call yourself my buddy. LOL


Haha, how've you been? It feels so good to be back home.
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Quoting swampliliy:


Let me know when you're coming to Gulfport. I'm buying. :))


Should be soon, I hope. Run into any of my family?
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
To: U.S. West Coast, Alaska, and British Columbia coastal regions
From: NOAA/NWS/West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center
Subject: Tsunami Information Statement #1 issued 03/8/2011 at 6:55PM PST

A strong earthquake has occurred, but a tsunami IS NOT expected along the California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, or Alaska coast. NO tsunami warning, watch or advisory is in effect for these areas.

Based on the earthquake magnitude, location and historic tsunami records, a damaging tsunami IS NOT expected along the California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska coasts. At coastal locations which have experienced strong ground shaking, local tsunamis are possible due to underwater landslides.

At 6:45 PM Pacific Standard Time on March 8, an earthquake with preliminary magnitude 7.2 occurred off the east coast of Honshu, Japan . (Refer to the United States Geological Survey for official earthquake parameters.)

Pacific coastal regions outside California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska should refer to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center messages for information on the event.

This will be the only statement issued for this event by the West Coast/Alaska Tsunami Warning Center unless conditions warrant. See the WCATWC web site for basic tsunami information, safety rules, and a tsunami travel time map and table. (NOTE: Travel time maps and tables indicate forecasted times only, not that a wave was generated.)

Link to Standard Information Statement
Link to Public Information Statement
Link to XML/CAP Message
Link to Printable Message

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 176 Comments: 55625
Magnitude 7.2 - NEAR THE EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN
2011 March 09 02:45:18 UTC
DetailsMapsTsunami Earthquake Details
This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.
Magnitude 7.2
Date-Time Wednesday, March 09, 2011 at 02:45:18 UTC
Wednesday, March 09, 2011 at 11:45:18 AM at epicenter

Location 38.510°N, 142.792°E
Depth 14.1 km (8.8 miles)
Region NEAR THE EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN
Distances 169 km (105 miles) E (80°) from Sendai, Honshu, Japan
196 km (122 miles) SE (133°) from Morioka, Honshu, Japan
221 km (137 miles) ENE (66°) from Fukushima, Honshu, Japan
416 km (258 miles) NE (40°) from TOKYO, Japan

Location Uncertainty horizontal +/- 12.8 km (8.0 miles); depth +/- 1.8 km (1.1 miles)
Parameters NST=464, Nph=469, Dmin=390.7 km, Rmss=1.06 sec, Gp= 29°,
M-type="moment" magnitude from initial P wave (tsuboi method) (Mi/Mwp), Version=B
Source U.S. Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center:
World Data Center for Seismology, Denver

Event ID usb0001r57
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 176 Comments: 55625
Quoting spathy:

Thanks Groth.
That is a high complement from someone with a LOOOOOONG history to pull from :O)
BTW English is my second language.
I only wish I had a first language to be a base source.
Dyslexic snickers.


Then ouy aer better than I thuoght!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 176 Comments: 55625
Quoting Grothar:


Now I know how Rodney Dangerfield felt. You try and teach these youngsters something and they bushwack you. Glad to hear you're doing OK. Got to stop my Orca's den sometime. Keep well. Looks like some nasty weather for this upcoming week again.


Let me know when you're coming to Gulfport. I'm buying. :))
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Seems like this year will be a very active CV season...
Move those African waves in the ITCZ, 10 to 20 degrees north (Summer) and were ready...

Animation Link

Notice how the swirl East of Spain how it disipattes

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Quoting spathy:
BTW
Spathy is on topic this evening.
I Know it doesnt happen often.
I start off on topic but it (sometimes)?
degrades from there?
Yet somehow when Spathy is ON Topic?,
I get little response.
Perhaps its too early for most.


You're doing well, spathy. I am watching everything you write. I am not good at math so I refrain from commenting. But you made some good points. 50% of the time I get the math wrong, and the other 60% I don't understand. Keep them on their toes.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting spathy:

Ah thank you.
I love WU.
So its a cut of remaining not total monies.
LOVE IT!
Refer to post #491.
Now We know the rest of the story.
Or do we?
Nrtiw...
You got your #s straight?
I bet you do.
You have always been a decent poster of relevant timely info.
So is my approximation of 10% to 12% reflective of total cuts of an entire fiscal year?


It is about 14% of the full year Operations, Research and Facilities budget.
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Quoting swampliliy:


Poor Groth- that's what happens when you're the senior guy though. :))

Good Gro, real good, thanx. You too I hope?

Been spending most of my time over at Orca's comedy club. :))


Now I know how Rodney Dangerfield felt. You try and teach these youngsters something and they bushwack you. Glad to hear you're doing OK. Got to stop my Orca's den sometime. Keep well. Looks like some nasty weather for this upcoming week again.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting Xyrus2000:


Nah. It used to be called Grothar's Blacksmith and BBQ. Then Hannibal came through with his elephants to invade Rome, and Grothar decided to head for greener pastures.

:D


Poor Groth- that's what happens when you're the senior guy though. :))

Good Gro, real good, thanx. You too I hope?

Been spending most of my time over at Orca's comedy club. :))
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Quoting Xyrus2000:


Nah. It used to be called Grothar's Blacksmith and BBQ. Then Hannibal came through with his elephants to invade Rome, and Grothar decided to head for greener pastures.

:D


That was when I moved with my Uncle, Erik the Red to Greenland. We heard it was very green. (You twit!) :P
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting caneswatch:


Moron Air Force Base, sounds like the perfect place for you Grothar LOL


Thanks, and you call yourself my buddy. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting caneswatch:


Moron Air Force Base, sounds like the perfect place for you Grothar LOL


Nah. It used to be called Grothar's Blacksmith and BBQ. Then Hannibal came through with his elephants to invade Rome, and Grothar decided to head for greener pastures.

:D
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Quoting Grothar:


Yo! Swamp. He wasn't calling us morons. It is a very famous base in Air Base in Spain. They treat the Americans very well there. Where you been hiding?


Moron Air Force Base, sounds like the perfect place for you Grothar LOL
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Quoting xcool:


Hey Xcool!!

Looks like it is going to stay north of your place at least!!
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493. xcool
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
Quoting swampliliy:



Huh? Where did that crap come from? "Moron US base"??


Yo! Swamp. He wasn't calling us morons. It is a very famous base in Air Base in Spain. They treat the Americans very well there. Where you been hiding?
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting spathy:
Ok I am obviously missing something here.
Or my facts are wrong.
(would not be the first time)
But at a quick glance.
Noaas budget is 5 Billion.
And the above post from Masters says that a 1/2 billion in cuts for Noaa is a 28% cut.
I am bad at math but that seems more like a 10% cut off the top of my tired brain.
This article must have the Budget #s wrong.

Excerpt from article.
Weather Forecasting: At least one-third of US GDP is concentrated in weather-sensitive industries, such as air and ocean travel, agriculture, energy distribution and construction.[1] These industries – and the jobs tied to them – are dependent upon weather forecasting conducted by NOAA’s National Weather Service. According to National Research Council, the $5.1 billion cost of weather forecasting returns an estimated annualized benefit of $31.5 billion.[2] Beyond the economic benefit, accurate and timely weather forecasting saves lives. Decreasing investment in weather forecasting could lead to more lives lost (annually, there are 1.5 million weather-related crashes, with 7,400 deaths, and $42 billion in economic losses).[3]

Link

I cant seem to find the original article that said the budget was 5.3 Billion.

If given this is even partly accurate.
A 10% to 15% cut in 5 Billion dollars worth of spending does not seem radical.
JMO
But if you cant find a 18%? amount of waste in a 5 Billion dollar operation that has suffered very few cutbacks in its history?
Then you arent looking.
And the scare tactics that say the Bouys for sending info out about catastrophic approaching storms is one of the first things to go?!
Is just hype!
They can find 15% to 20% waste without cutting any life saving operations.
Give me a break.
If they can only find 10%?
Then employee benefits will and should be the next to be discussed before any life saving programs are cut.
I am sure this is over simplification.
But I dont think I am far off.


The number comes from the 2010 budget, and only from the Operations, Research and Facilities (ORF) part.
2010 ORF ~ 3.4 billion, however since the year is already half over, it is 454 million out of 1.7 billion.
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Quoting Barefootontherocks:
FWIW...
5.5 billion FY2012 budget for NOAA. Down $56.8 million from FY2011.

NOAA's budget covers more than weather forecasting.

The NWS only has about 4400 employees. Last time a crunch came (1995) NWS furloughed employees only at Nat'l Headquarters. This time... well, "the 1990s were the good old days." (My source is former NWS Director Joe Friday. His words to my ears.)

Also, Dr. Masters' blog speaks of cuts to the remainder of current FY 2011 budget. Perhaps that clarifies something besides the butter.
:)


Not mention a hefty chunk of that money just goes to satellites and hardware. Satellites are VERY expensive and cost a lot of money to operate, let alone build and launch.
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FWIW...
5.5 billion FY2012 budget for NOAA. Down $56.8 million from FY2011.

NOAA's budget covers more than weather forecasting.

The NWS only has about 4400 employees. Last time a crunch came (1995) NWS furloughed employees only at Nat'l Headquarters. This time... well, "the 1990s were the good old days." (My source is former NWS Director Joe Friday. His words to my ears.)

Also, Dr. Masters' blog speaks of cuts to the remainder of current FY 2011 budget. Perhaps that clarifies something besides the butter.
:)
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Quoting TexasGulf:
I live just North of Houston at elev. 73' above current sea level. In about 400 /- years, according to Global Warming theory, my property should be Ocean Front overlooking the relatively shallow & picturesque Bay of Houston.

Question: Would it be too forward of me, when selling my house, to advertise it as pre-Beach Front Property with future boat access to the Gulf? That should be worth at least a 10% increase in price, right?


1) 73' isn't high enough. If both the Greenland and the Antarctic melt your house will be a fish tank toy.

2) At the projected rate of accelerated melting, it will be a LONG time before your house is anywhere near the beach. So unless you're thinking human life spans are about to increase to centuries, I think you better hold off on the beach-front property gimmick.
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484. Skyepony (Mod)
Marine sanctuaries are in the oceans & parks on land..

NOAA has warned of a near total collapse in the ocean fishing industry by 2050. Cut the funding may help the chatter disappear..
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 209 Comments: 39082
482. Skyepony (Mod)
Spathy~ I looked around for that number before my last reply to your last post.. I assume you fell out since there was no response to my military fund raiding ideas.. anyway.. I used 2010 numbers because the budget for this year hasn't been decided. That was 4.4billion but could have been with ear marks or such..


Quoting Skyepony:


My argument is this is one of those important things.. This is life & property. It's killing more Americans than terrorists & we are spending $663.8 billion there. That's ~1/2 our deficit & a large creator of the deficit. Why no mention to cut that? NOAA is asking for $4.4billion. NOAA spending saves us money in both the public & private sector.. It's money invested, not squandered.

Not to mention it erks me..Cutting NOAA will only make the new business of mega-disasters more profitable, at the cost of the average Joe. It's disturbing how many of these cuts are in big businesses favor.. One example (& there is more) the funding of PBS is a tiny bit of a drop but this nation's only media without the big business ties & agenda left...house wants it gone.

They won't cut the military cause then we'd be forced to pay closer to the true cost of fossil fuels...it would kill the notion they are cheaper than any alternative.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 209 Comments: 39082
I live just North of Houston at elev. 73' above current sea level. In about 400 +/- years, according to Global Warming theory, my property should be Ocean Front overlooking the relatively shallow & picturesque Bay of Houston.

Question: Would it be too forward of me, when selling my house, to advertise it as pre-Beach Front Property with future boat access to the Gulf? That should be worth at least a 10% increase in price, right?
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Quoting Xyrus2000:


Moron US Base



OK- I'm a moron- sorry :))))
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Quoting swampliliy:



Huh? Where did that crap come from? "Moron US base"??


Moron US Base

There is an accent over the second o, so it has more of a long o sound.
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Quoting PlazaRed:


Yes I am familiar with the via verde and all the main places round here, I have walked, bicycled and driven all over the place in the last 10 years, I live right in front of the towns castle and I have big windows that look over the mountains towards Africa, in the other direction north west I can see Seville at night, over the top of your Moron US base that's lite up like a Christmas tree at night, I posted a bit about that at about 283 earlier.We sometimes get very big storms here in the winter.



Huh? Where did that crap come from? "Moron US base"??
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Finnally,the Hurricane Tomas Cyclone report was released. The peak intensity was 85 kts as it moved thru St Lucia.

Link
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Quoting JFLORIDA:


A glacial record is not a "short observation period"

Is it? Its a continuous record of ice back thousands of years in some cases.


Not part of the conversation. My response to Neapolitan was concerning an article referring to ice mass measurements of Antarctica and Greenland from 1992-2009.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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