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January 6, 2021

A new Congress and a new administration: what to expect in 2021

The year 2020 was monumental for U.S. elections: more than 159 million people voted, the highest number ever recorded in an election. President-elect Joseph R. Biden’s win will be certified on 6 January by Congress. Already, President-elect Biden has shared his priorities for his time in office: COVID-19, economic recovery, addressing racial equity and climate change. While Democrats maintained control of the House of Representatives, it appears Democrats have flipped …

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December 22, 2020

Science stands steady in Fiscal Year 2021 spending

Amid contentious negotiation for a new COVID-19 stimulus package and several continuing resolutions, Congress finally passed the fiscal year 2021 spending package. Overall, federal science agency budgets saw slight boosts in funding. Notably, NOAA’s Climate Research office saw a 7% increase and NSF has been directed to issue a report on the extent of the damage to the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. Additionally, the Forest and Rangeland Service within …

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December 1, 2020

Legal Education for Scientists at #AGU20

The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund (CSLDF) and AGU work together to help scientists from all geoscience disciplines understand their legal rights and responsibilities—knowledge that’s an essential part of every researcher’s professional development. This is the ninth year we’re partnering on the Legal Education for Scientists Program, and we’re offering a range of events at the 2020 Fall Meeting.   Among our events are three workshops featuring attorneys from CSLDF and …

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November 23, 2020

Science Policy Events at Fall Meeting 2020

AGU’s annual Fall Meeting is just around the corner! Although Fall Meeting 2020 will look a little different than years past, we are thrilled to have the Earth and space science community together again in one virtual space. The Public Affairs Team has been busy preparing a packed schedule of science policy events for our members–whether you want to hear from experts on what the recent U.S. election means for …

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November 19, 2020

Science stalls in Senate spending bills: Part 2

While Congress is still at odds over COVID-19 pandemic relief, we are nearly two months past the end of the fiscal year without a new budget. The House passed its spending bills in July, the Senate delivered their FY21 spending in mid-November. We are breaking down the spending and programmatic highlights for federal Earth and space science agencies, including highlights from the reports and comparing funding across the House, Senate, …

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Science stalls in Senate spending bills: Part 1

While Congress is still at odds over COVID-19 pandemic relief, we are nearly two months past the end of the fiscal year without a new budget. The House passed its spending bills in July, the Senate delivered their FY21 spending in mid-November. Over the next two posts, we will detail the spending and programmatic highlights for federal Earth and space science agencies, including highlights from the reports and comparing funding …

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November 16, 2020

The Western US in Flames – What’s Going On?

by: Shane Coffield, PhD Candidate in Earth System Science at UC Irvine   It feels difficult to believe that the Australian bushfires happened just earlier this year. Since then, a pandemic, social unrest, and a pivotal U.S. election have dominated the news cycle.  Through all of this, however, the climate crisis hasn’t taken a break. The wildfires in the Western US are a stark reminder of that truth. They are …

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November 6, 2020

Restoring Science, Protecting the Public: Recommendations for Federal Agencies in the Next Presidential Term 

By Cheyenne Young, AGU’s Fall 2020 Public Affairs Intern   Amid the ongoing elections, the United States is facing the public health crisis COVID-19 and the climate crisis, in addition to tackling years of social injustice. Thousands of highly qualified professionals employed in U.S. government agencies are working to create comprehensive solutions to address these challenges. While each agency has a different purpose, all share the same goal of serving …

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October 12, 2020

How faculty can help increase STEM student voter turnout (and turnout across all disciplines)

by Samantha Perlman, Civic Engagement Manager, Scholars Strategy Network &  Melissa Varga, Science Network Community Manager & Partnerships Coordinator   With U.S. elections right around the corner, we are all wondering how this unprecedented election will play out. As a deadly pandemic disrupts voting, and rampant and viral misinformation spreads throughout the country, concerns among the public about the integrity of our voting systems are understandably heightened. During this difficult …

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September 21, 2020

Elections and Science: Climate Science Legal Defense Fund is here to help scientists prepare to participate in 2020 elections

Climate Science Legal Defense Fund attorneys are teaming up with the American Geophysical Union to host two free webinars on September 28th and October 13th. This webinar series will help scientists from all disciplines participate in electoral politics or engage directly with their legislators as private citizens fully, confidently, and effectively. The first webinar in the series on 28 September from 2-3pm ET, entitled “How scientists can be involved in …

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