News & AnalysisOcean Science

U.S. Budget Cuts Threaten to Sink Undersea Research Fleet

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Science  30 Mar 2012:
Vol. 335, Issue 6076, pp. 1556
DOI: 10.1126/science.335.6076.1556

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A U.S. government program that provides ocean researchers with access to submersibles and a sea-floor observatory may be doomed to Davy Jones's locker by fiscal belt-tightening—unless Congress steps in to save it. Last week, researchers began to plead their case, asking lawmakers to reject an Obama Administration plan to eliminate the $4 million National Undersea Research Program (NURP), which is run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. NURP has survived similar near-death experiences in the past, but researchers fear this year's battle could mark the end of the 32-year-old program.