Pasadena, CA (March 11, 2019) — In response to President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Request, The Planetary Society issued the following statement:
Today’s request is the first budget proposal of the new decade. Whether NASA succeeds or fails in its efforts—to return humans to deep space, to search for life, and to understand the cosmos in the 2020s and beyond—is determined by steps taken now. This budget proposal, while an improvement compared to previous years, would start the decade by cutting nearly half a billion dollars from NASA. This is the wrong way to kick off an otherwise promising era of discovery and exploration.
NASA must continue to grow. The Planetary Society and other groups have proposed annual 5% growth with the additional funding split between robotic science and human spaceflight, amounting to $22.6 billion for 2020. Congress has provided, on average, a 4.1% increase to NASA’s budget every year since 2014. This goal is achievable and sustainable.
Absent this reasonable increase—just slightly above inflation—we note again that the Administration has proposed cuts to important programs in Earth Science, Astrophysics, and STEM Engagement/Education.
There are commendable aspects to this budget, and The Planetary Society strongly supports its proposals to send humans into deep space, to move Europa Clipper to a 2023 launch date, and to begin a Mars Sample Return campaign. Critical science and exploration missions are moving forward, and we urge Congress to support these initiatives fully to enable their success.
Casey Dreier, chief advocate and senior space policy adviser, is available for interviews. Please arrange with Danielle Gunn, chief communications officer, at [email protected]
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About The Planetary Society
With a global community of more than 2 million space enthusiasts, The Planetary Society is the world’s largest and most influential space advocacy organization. Founded in 1980 by Carl Sagan, Bruce Murray, and Louis Friedman and today led by CEO Bill Nye, we empower the public to take a meaningful role in advancing space exploration through advocacy, education outreach, scientific innovation, and global collaboration. Together with our members and supporters, we’re on a mission to explore worlds, find life off Earth, and protect our planet from dangerous asteroids. To learn more, visit www.planetary.org.