[ESIP-all] Fwd: AMS Report on Earth observations, science, and services (Earth OSS)

Curt Tilmes Curt.Tilmes at nasa.gov
Wed May 23 08:18:20 EDT 2012


On 05/22/12 1:44 PM, Paul Higgins wrote:
We released a report today on Earth observations, science, and
services.  It may interest some of you. The press release is
below. Please help spread the word if you can.

Here is the link to the report: www.ametsoc.org/oss

Sorry for any cross posting.

Best wishes,

U.S. Earth Observations, Science and Services Are Critical to Support
Society But Are at Risk

WASHINGTON — May 22, 2012 — Earth observations, science, and services
(Earth OSS) inform and guide the activities of virtually all economic
sectors and innumerable institutions underlying modern civilization,
according to a new study by the American Meteorological Society (AMS)
Policy Program. The report also found that Earth OSS in the United
States face considerable challenges because economic downturns and
Federal budget deficits put efforts to build and maintain Earth OSS
capabilities at serious risk.

The findings stem from an AMS Policy Program workshop, Earth
Observations, Science and Services for the 21st Century, held in
Washington, DC. Experts from academia, government and the private
sector convened to examine challenges and opportunities facing Earth
OSS, which support agriculture, energy, transportation, water resource
management, public health, emergency response, insurance, national
security and other foundations of society.

Earth observations reveal a wide range of characteristics and
functions of our planet. We observe weather events, surface
conditions, ecosystems, agriculture, the built environment, and urban
areas, all of which underpin U.S. social and economic
well-being. Earth sciences consist of basic and applied analysis and
experiments, in the lab, in the field, or in physical models, that
increase our knowledge and understanding of the Earth system. Earth
services include weather forecasts, natural hazard preparedness and
response, and decision support across key economic sectors.

The report concludes Earth OSS are a fundamental component of efforts
to meet basic human needs such as providing food, shelter, energy,
health and safety. At the same time, the opportunities for societal
benefit from Earth OSS are ever-increasing.

“Earth observations, science, and services comprise one of this
country’s critical infrastructures,” Bill Hooke, director of the AMS
Policy Program, says. “Agribusiness, the energy industry, water
resource managers, public health officials, financial markets,
emergency managers, military commands, diplomats, and leaders of the
world’s nations all rely on Earth OSS. However, the benefits of Earth
OSS are obscure to most, and many of the beneficiaries are unaware of
their reliance on OSS.”

Taken together, Earth OSS comprise a national asset that, if lost or
degraded, will not meet future societal needs that span the whole of
the national agenda.

“Given the nation’s growing reliance on weather and climate
information, efforts to expand our Earth OSS capability are virtually
certain to broadly benefit the U.S. economy,” says Paul Higgins,
associate director of the AMS Policy Program. “We need strong and
effective Earth OSS in the years ahead. That will require thoughtful
national policies, improved collaboration among the public, private,
and academic sectors, and robust funding for key Earth OSS resources.”

The full report is available at the American Meteorological Society
Policy Program Web site at www.ametsoc.org/oss

About the AMS Policy Program

Societal choices have the greatest chance to benefit the public when
grounded in knowledge and understanding. The American Meteorological
Society’s Policy Program makes the Earth science community's
considerable knowledge base available and useful to the policy process
by: 1) expanding scientists' capacity to engage the policy process, 2)
keeping government decision makers aware of scientific advances, 3)
enabling meaningful collaborations between scientists and decision
makers, 4) conducting policy research and analysis, and 5)
communicating our vision and results. To learn more, visit
www.ametsoc.org/atmospolicy <http://www.ametsoc.org/atmospolicy>.

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