Geoscience Policy Monthly Review
december 2015

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Congress passes FY 2016 omnibus spending bill increasing funding for geosciences

December 18, 2015

On December 18, Congress passed an omnibus spending bill providing funding for the federal government through September 30, 2016. Under the bill, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) would all receive increases to their budgets.

Within the USGS, all six mission directorates will receive increases in their budgets: Natural Hazards will receive $138.8 million, a 2.7 percent boost from FY 2015; Energy, Minerals, and Environmental health will receive $94.5 million, a 2.4 percent increase; Core Science Systems will receive $111.5 million, a 4 percent increase; and Climate and Land Use Change will receive $140 million, a 3 percent increase. Water Resources and Ecosystems will also both see slight increases to their program budgets.

In addition, the bill provides NSF with a 1.6 percent increase in funding over the FY 2015 enacted funding level. Furthermore, the bill does not contain any restrictions in funding for NSF’s Geoscience Directorate.

The bipartisan legislation was released with an accompanying joint explanatory statement which describes the funding levels in detail for each of the science agencies, offices, and programs. For more information and a full table of all geoscience appropriations for FY 2016 please visit the AGI website.

Sources: FY 2016 Omnibus Spending Bill