• A NASA program that cost $10 million per year to track carbon and methane, key greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming, has been cancelled.
  • The end of the programme — called the Carbon Monitoring System (CMS) — which tracked sources and sinks for carbon and made high-resolution models of the planet’s flows of carbon — was first reported by the journal Science.
  • NASA “declined to provide a reason for the cancellation beyond ‘budget constraints and higher priorities within the science budget.”
  • Existing grants would be allowed to finish but no new research would be supported.
  • Trump has already announced the US pullout from the 2015 Paris climate accord, a deal signed by more than 190 nations to slash polluting emissions from fossil fuels.

What about the Earth science mission?

  • Trump has proposed cancelling another Earth science mission, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3 (OCO-3), for next year, though it did receive funding for fiscal year 2018.
  • The CMS cuts jeopardize efforts to verify the emission cuts agreed to in the Paris climate deal.
  • GEDI, a new ecosystem carbon-monitoring instrument, is set to launch to the International Space Station this summer.”