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GOV/MIL Entire US Antarctic research program canceled by NSF due to partial gov't shutdown
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  1. #1
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    Entire US Antarctic research program canceled by NSF due to partial gov't shutdown

    Entire US Antarctic research program canceled by NSF due to partial gov't shutdown

    By

    Published October 09, 2013

    | LiveScience



    As scientists had feared, the National Science Foundation announced it was canceling the U.S. Antarctic research program for this year because of the ongoing government shutdown.

    Scientists and contractors already stationed at the three U.S. science bases on Antarctica will be sent home and a small staff left behind to maintain the structures and equipment, the National Science Foundation (NSF) said Tuesday.


    The announcement was a devastating blow for the polar science community. The shutdown means the cancellation of millions of dollars of planned research. Graduate students may have to stay in school longer because they won't get the data they need to complete their research. Contractors are losing their jobs. Other countries, including New Zealand, France and Italy, rely on the United States' sea-ice runway at McMurdo Station and may not be able to conduct their own research after the pullout. [Weirdest Effects of the Shutdown]

    Though the NSF said it would work to restart science activities after the government shutdown ends, many U.S. scientists will miss their timing window for the summer research season, which started Oct. 3.

    "It makes the blood boil," said Ross Powell, a geologist at Northern Illinois University and chief scientist for the WISSARD project, the first drilling expedition to discover life in a buried Antarctic lake.

    This year, Powell and his colleagues planned to drill into the spot where the Whillans Ice Stream meets the sea. Remote sensing surveys suggests water flows from the buried Lake Whillans into the ocean underneath the Ross Ice Shelf, creating a hidden, estuary-like setting.

    The NSF has invested $10 million in the project, not counting the hours and hours of planning and operational time, Powell said. "If we don't get this field season, basically, we've wasted half the money," Powell told LiveScience.

    Dawn Sumner, a geobiologist at the University of California, Davis, expected to leave for Antarctica on Oct. 17. Now, Sumner said she's in a holding pattern, waiting to see if Congress "gets its act together" in time for her to salvage her research plans, she told LiveScience.

    "Mine is somewhat time-sensitive; we can't do it in midsummer," Sumner said of her research on microbial life in Antarctic lakes, though she put her plight in perspective. "Although I am very disappointed in losing some, possibly all, of my research, the impacts on other people's health and safety are much more dire."

    Other projects that could be affected by the pullout include NASA's Operation IceBridge, which tracks yearly changes in the polar ice, as well as the ongoing monitoring of climate change. Interrupting the unbroken data sets researchers gather to gauge global warming makes it difficult to analyze trends, many scientists have said.

    Copyright 2013 LiveScience, a TechMediaNetwork company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/...earch-program/

  2. #2
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    gee, worst of all, all those cream of the crop scientists will have to return to the US and live through the horror of it melting down and burning to a crisp. along with the rest of us. bummer.
    "Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today's world do not have."
    - Ronald Reagan

    Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding,
    acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will direct your path.

  3. #3
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    Reality sucks. Reality is we're bankrupt. These are just the first gentle waves of a megastorm coming.
    What is the lake of fire? What is it's purpose? Is the lake of fire eternal hell? Is there any hope of escape for those cast into this lake?
    http://bible-truths.com/lake1.html

  4. #4
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    Jeesh.
    Why can't the other countries that are bitching so much maintain the airstrip.
    Do they expect the US to do everything for them.
    Oh wait, silly question. Of course they do.
    "I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -DH Lawrence
    "We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are." - The Talmud

  5. #5
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    Good. Now let the philanthropists, universities (through private donations and grad school students), and other countries fund and staff it - sharing in the cost, the way it used to be. We're broke. We can no longer afford to pay for everything everybody wants and it's only going to get worse.
    Politicians can't give us anything without depriving us of something else. Government is not a god. Every dime they spend must first be taken from someone else. -- unknown

    A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul. -- George Bernard Shaw

  6. #6
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    But-but, what about the Penguin's and-and the Global warming research???

  7. #7
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    They (tptb) are hiding something. Money or not. Sending all those scientists home.
    .
    "The karma café has no menu......You get served what you deserve!"

    ".Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in, broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, WOW, What a ride!"

    Personal Responsibility..The one thing no one can take away from you

    ."The only tyrant I accept in this world is the still, small voice within me."

  8. #8
    If it doesn't have to do with national security, go ahead and shut it down. Especially if it deals with the South Pole. Maybe the North Pole studies have an impact on Alaska but otherwise, I'm tired of funding everything for everybody.

    A

  9. #9
    I'm fine with that.


    We are broke and have no business borrowing money to fund stuff like this. Let the private sector pick it up, or leave it for future generations.

    Despite what Al Gore is trying to sell, Antarctica isn't going anywhere.

  10. #10
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    They're going into their warmer months, but if they don't resupply in the next two months they will have to fly out of there and it may never get restarted and just set there frozen.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Bolt View Post
    Good. Now let the philanthropists, universities (through private donations and grad school students), and other countries fund and staff it - sharing in the cost, the way it used to be. We're broke. We can no longer afford to pay for everything everybody wants and it's only going to get worse.
    Uh no they won't but my guess is that China and Russia probably will...
    expatriate Californian living in rural Ireland with husband, dogs, horses. garden and many, many cats

  12. #12
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    That should never have been on taxpayer money to begin with and is " non-essential".
    They can shutdown the "national science foundation" while they are at it and REALLY save some big bucks!
    HERE IS A DECISION THAT COULD LEAVE YOU, AND YOUR LOVED ONES BOTH "Dead" (and) Wrong: IF YOU DECIDE "Better NO treatment, than Colloidal Silver treatment for Ebola!, you are most likely dead."

  13. #13
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    tough shit
    " Fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity"- Sigmond Freud

    Turn your swords into plowshares ,and you'll be plowing for those that didn't...

    We didn't create GOD out of our imagination ,He created us out of his...

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ainitfunny View Post
    That should never have been on taayer money to begin with and is " non-essential".
    Aww, it's not so bad now. I know it's a lot cheaper now than it used to be.

    The Navy used to have a big base under the ice base there with even a nuclear reactor that had dozens of radiation leaks and had to be constantly repaired
    There were two type of Navy assignments there. Normal where you could go and come and winter over once the ships and planes stopped coming and going.
    Winter over group got choice duty assignments after they finished.



    Nuclear plant leak in Antarctica suspected of causing cancer
    http://www.newsnet5.com/dpp/news/loc...causing-cancer

    •By: Ron Regan, newsnet5.com By: Ron Regan, newsnet5.com

    CLEVELAND - An exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation has uncovered a possible link between a nuclear plant and cancer after an Ohio man died from multiple cancerous tumors throughout his body.

    Charlie Swinney died one year ago from cancer that ravaged his body for more than a decade, but the Navy veteran may have left behind an important clue into what caused his death.

    Our exclusive investigation uncovered multiple letters that Swinney sent to the U.S. Veterans Administration describing a nuclear plant that was built at a base he served at in Antarctica.

    The McMurdo Nuclear plant was built in Antarctica in the early 1960s and provided power to the base until it was shut down in 1972. Swinney and an estimated 15,000 other veterans served at McMurdo Station as part of a support team throughout the plant's operation.

    The Navy's final operating report found the plant had 438 malfunctions over its history, including leaking water surrounding the reactor and hairline cracks in the reactor liner as early as 1964.

    The plant was finally shut down in 1972 and later dismantled when "possible stress corrosion cracking" in the piping system was discovered.

    Though the Navy's report found no evidence of excessive radiation exposure, veterans like Charlie Swinney have emerged across the country with similar concerns after being diagnosed with cancerous tumors.

    "Charlie had over 200 tumors in his body," said Swinney's wife Elaine. "He kept saying, this isn't right. Why is there so many of us in this close group getting sick like this."

    Our investigation spoke with veterans from California to Florida and Wisconsin to North Carolina.

    Navy veteran Jim Landy of Pensacola is fighting stomach, liver and brain cancer.

    "I believe it was a greater risk than we all assumed," said Landy.

    Another veteran in Wisconsin survived testicular and lung cancer.

    "It makes you kind of wonder, when the doctor scratched his head and said, you're kind of old to have testicular cancer," said Jim Chock of Green Bay.

    Navy veteran Bob Boyles survived thyroid cancer and remembers a similar question from his physician.

    "The first thing he said was, when were you exposed to radiation?"

    But veterans said repeated efforts to have the U.S. Veterans Administration look into cancer claims as a service-related disability have failed.

    "Charlie just felt like he got kicked to the curb. He felt like he didn't count. He felt betrayed,"said Elaine Swinney.

    Check out the final operating report for the McMurdo Station nuclear power plant:
    http://bit.ly/dMjFVl
    "I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -DH Lawrence
    "We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are." - The Talmud

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    They (tptb) are hiding something. Money or not. Sending all those scientists home.
    I agree.

    All major telescopes have been shut down also.
    ___

  16. #16
    NSF= Non Sufficient Funds
    How appropriate
    Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than a pesky raven?
    It is difficult to stand idly by and watch the vacuum of ignorance being filled with lies

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fisher View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Hansa44 View Post
    They (tptb) are hiding something. Money or not. Sending all those scientists home.
    I agree.

    All major telescopes have been shut down also.
    Do y'all understand how many other countries (Russia, India, etc) have bases in the area???

    Had a client who spent 2 seasons in his India research station...cool guy...came out of IIT and then Navy and was with McKinsey by the time I met him. Some ijit plant mgr in northern MN, on a cool day (about -10F) looked at him and asked if it was cold enough for him...and he had to admit to having gotten out the windbreaker...then told him it was nuttin compared to his time at McMurdo. Plant mgr turned around and said NOTHING to him for the duration of the McKinsey study....could deal it out but not take it...
    I would STILL rather fight an insurgency (from EITHER SIDE) than an epidemic!

    "I must not fear.
    Fear is the mind-killer.
    Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
    I will face my fear.
    I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
    And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
    Where the fear has gone there will be nothing....only I will remain"

    Frank Herbert "Dune" "Bene Gesserit Anti-Fear Litany"


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  18. #18
    I am aware of the other stations and I was about to point out that originally I believe the base was considered a matter of US security - a lot of the science experiments do have multiple applications and if the US just leaves the area, they will be leaving themselves open to possible threats (or at least that was what was believed at the time). Even if things were to be re-examined, this is not the way to shut this sort of project down as much of the money has already been spent (as is pointed out in the article) if the US seriously wanted to turn the whole thing over to private contractors (which will probably cost more in the long run because some of the stuff is classified so defense contractors) but even if the US decided to go that route - turning the project over with a year or two's headway to change tracks, get new contracts in place, etc makes a lot more economic sense than wasting 5 million out of a 10 million dollar contract.
    expatriate Californian living in rural Ireland with husband, dogs, horses. garden and many, many cats

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