The Planetary Society Encouraged by U.S. FY2017 Budget Request for NASA, Supports Continued Growth

Bill Nye, Casey Dreier Respond, Urge Political Commitment to Reflect Public Will

Press Statement
February 11, 2016

Erin Greeson
Phone: +1-626-793-5100

Pasadena, CA (February 11, 2016) -- In response to U.S. President Obama’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 Budget Request, The Planetary Society issued the following statements from Bill Nye, CEO, and Casey Dreier, director of space policy:

“The President’s recent budget request is catching up with recent congressional actions in support of NASA. It’s especially good to see the increases for space science. But we can do more. The nation asks so much of NASA, and NASA delivers. NASA is maintaining operations aboard the space station, while it’s actively exploring the Solar System and distant reaches of the cosmos—all while planning missions to send humans to Mars. The Planetary Society urges Congress to continue their support of NASA in 2017 by allowing its budget to increase above inflation. The world is in love with space exploration, and NASA is the best brand the United States has. With the right resources, NASA can lead the way deeper into space.”

- Bill Nye, CEO, The Planetary Society

“While it is satisfying to see the White House increase its request for NASA’s Planetary Science Division to $1.52 billion, it still represents a cut to the program’s current funding level. The Planetary Society believes that all of NASA’s space science divisions deserve support, even Planetary Science, which has now experienced five proposed budget cuts in five years. After the stunning successes of last year’s Pluto flyby, the exploration of Ceres, and the confirmation of flowing water on Mars, the nation should not back away from planetary exploration now.

“We urge Congress to continue their trend of enacting NASA budgets above the President’s request. Using the FY 2016 congressional budget as a baseline going forward would help sustain NASA as the world leader in human spaceflight, robotic exploration, space science, aeronautics, and fundamental scientific research.”

- Casey Dreier, director of space policy, The Planetary Society

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