Dear fellow GSA Planetary Geology Division members,

We, the officers of the GSA Planetary Geology Division, are writing to ask you to join a broad campaign to communicate with your representatives in Congress and to the President regarding the state of NASA’s planetary science budget.

As you know, the Administration requested large cuts to the planetary budget for the past two fiscal years.  They will probably do so again.  Thanks in part to our letters, Congress successfully pushed back on some of the cuts in FY 2013.  We need your action again for the FY 2014 budget.

The timing of this letter campaign is important.

Why now?

  • Congress is working on the FY 2014 budget right now and we want to influence that process.
  • The Administration is working on the FY 2015 budget request right now and we want to influence that process, too.
  • The leadership the planetary sections of AGU and GSA, the DPS and The Planetary Society (TPS) sent a joint letter to Congress on October 25 that is having an impact. Following up now with community action is the next step of our campaign and it will maximize the impact.
  • We want to get this call to action out before the week of Thanksgiving so we can reach members and staff while they are still in town.

What are we asking you to do?

  • ESSENTIAL:  Send a letter via email to your Representative in the House, to both of your Senators, and to the President. We have worked with our colleagues in the other organizations to craft a letter that conveys the key messages.   This letter is available on the TPS website.   You can copy the letter and put it into your own email, or even easier, you can send it directly from the TPS website directly to the President and to your representatives.  Follow the link below.

  • IF YOU HAVE TIME:  Call the offices of your Representative and Senators to let them know you have sent the letter. Respectfully and briefly hit the two key points of the letter: (1) Remind them that the US National Research Council’s Decadal Survey recommended a balance program funded at the historic level of $1.5B per year that will keep the US at the forefront of planetary exploration, and (2) ask for their support to restore NASA’s planetary science budget to $1.5B per year.
  • IF YOU HAVE TIME:  Use social media to bring attention to this call to action and to promote a timely planetary science highlight.
  • IF YOU HAVE TIME:  Tell your non-planetary scientist friends and family about planetary science, its importance, and the threats it faces. If they want to get involved in the campaign, you can point them to The Planetary Society’s website where they can send their own letter.

Thank you for your quick response to this coordinated and urgent call to action.  We are looking forward to a strong response from all the members of the GSA PGD, in conjunction with our AGU, DPS and TPS colleagues, to conveying our requests to our elected representatives, for the future health of our field.

Devon Burr, PGD Chair

Debra Buczkowski, PGD First Vice-Chair

Danielle Wyrick, PGD Second Vice-Chair

James Wray, Treasurer

Bob Anderson, PGD Past Chair