Policy & Critical Issues News

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Stay up-to-date with the latest geoscience policy information and news by reading our policy news briefs and monthly review digests, reviewing the latest trends in federal geoscience funding.

Policy News

AGI's Geoscience Policy program publishes up-to-date news that covers geoscience policy activities and related events in Washington, D.C. Stay current with our Policy News Briefs, read our Monthly Review for a digest of policy information and activities, or peruse our Annual Review for a summary of the year's major developments in federal geoscience policy.

You can also sign up to receive the Policy Monthly Review as an email digest.

Recent Policy News Briefs

U.S. Capitol with flag
A summary of notices posted to the Federal Register by geoscience-related federal agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, Department of the Interior, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, and more.
Geological Surveys Database
Congress overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan package of more than one hundred public lands, natural resources, and water bills in February. The package, originally titled the Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47), includes measures to improve the nation’s volcano monitoring network, reauthorize...
Mammatus clouds that are usually associated with thunderstorms.
House Democrats held a series of hearings throughout February to highlight the evidence and impacts of climate change. Beginning on February 6, two simultaneous hearings were held on the societal impacts of climate change and the potential adaptation and mitigation strategies. The following week,...
Hawaiian flower
On February 14, Representative Chellie Pingree (D-ME-1) introduced H.R. 1221, the Agriculture Research Integrity Act of 2019, to block the relocation of two U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offices out of the National Capital Region. Secretary Sonny Perdue announced his intent to move the...
IES Soils Glyph
Lawmakers in both the House and Senate reintroduced legislation to improve research and coordination needed to help communities prepare for and respond to landslides. The bill, called the National Landslide Preparedness Act (S. 529/H.R. 1261), would create a unified national program run by USGS to...
Capitol at night
Two bipartisan carbon capture bills were introduced in the Senate on February 7. First, the Carbon Capture Modernization Act (S. 407) was introduced by Senator John Hoeven (R-ND) to modify the existing tax credit for investment in clean coal facilities so that it would more effectively encourage...
Natural gas pump
On February 8, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY-14) and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced a resolution proposing an economic stimulus program known as the Green New Deal. The resolution (H.Res. 109/S.Res. 59) calls for a complete overhaul of U.S. energy production infrastructure and...
House chamber
On February 6, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies held its first hearing of the 116th Congress to review how the recent government shutdown affected agency spending. Subcommittee Chair Betty McCollum (D-MN) began the hearing by emphasizing the...
U.S. Capitol
On February 14, Congress passed legislation containing the final FY 2019 spending agreements for certain agencies that had recently been caught up in the 35-day partial government shutdown. NSF and NASA each received a 4 percent increase to their total budgets in FY 2019, compared to last year’s...
Geoscientist working in a wetland.
Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) reintroduced a bipartisan package of more than one hundred public lands, natural resources, and water bills, which they negotiated last year with their counterparts on the House Natural Resources Committee. The lands package—S. 47, the...

Recent Policy Monthly Reviews

Annual Review of Geoscience Federal Policy

Education Policy Review (January-June 2018)


Federal Geoscience Funding

Stay up-to-date on the budget process and appropriations by fiscal year with the Library of Congress Appropriations and Budget page. The AAAS R&D Budget and Policy Program provides information on trends in federal research and development funding, including information on the president's budget request and appropriations bills. AIP's Federal Science Budget Tracker also has useful information on the status of budgets and appropriations relevant to the physical sciences.


Federal Geoscience Nominations

Track the confirmation process of key geoscience presidential nominations. You can also track the nominations process through the Library of Congress and the websites of Senate committees of jurisdiction. Learn more About Nominations by the U.S. President and the confirmation process through the Library of Congress.