Trump seeks 17 percent cut to NOAA budget, elimination of Sea Grant program

Published on
March 7, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump has a proposed a major reduction in the the budget of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the elimination of the NOAA-managed Sea Grant program, according to media reports.

NOAA, the federal agency in charge of fisheries management, weather forecasting, nautical surveys and assisting marine industries, faces a proposed 17 percent cut to its overall budget, The Washington Post reported Friday, 3 March. The plan is for the fiscal 2018 budget, which begins 1 October, 2017.

Specifically, the Trump administration is seeking cuts to NOAA’s spending on education, grants, and research, the newspaper reported, citing a four-page Office of Management and Budget memo. NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research would stand to lose USD 126 million (EUR 119 million), or 26 percent, of its current budgeted funds, while its satellite data division would lose USD 513 million (EUR 486 million), or 22 percent, of its current funding.

NOAA’s fisheries agency – the National Marine Fisheries Service – would face a five percent cut, as would the National Weather Service, according to the Post. And Trump’s plan also eliminates all USD 73 million (EUR 69 million) allocated for the national Sea Grant program, a network of 33 programs across the country that are tied to institutes of higher education and function similarly to agriculture cooperative extensions for marine industry and environmental research.

The numbers may change as NOAA begins negotiations with the White House in the weeks to come, and are subject to congressional amendment or approval, the Post reported.

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