Bush is First President To Visit Silver Spring Campus
February 14, President George W. Bush unveiled his “clean skies” initiative
on NOAA’s Silver Spring, Maryland campus. Before an enthusiastic gathering
of NOAA staff, the President underscored his commitment to fostering “economic
growth in ways that protect our environment.”
Speaking at NOAA’s Science Center, President Bush reaffirmed
commitment to the UN Framework Convention (on climate change) and its
central goal, to stabilize atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration at
a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate.”
Among many initiatives, the President announced $25 million for climate
observation systems in developing countries to "help scientists understand
the dynamics of climate change."
Bush said, “It’s an honor to address this topic at NOAA, whose research
is providing us with the answers to critical questions about our environment.”
President Bush thanked Commerce Secretary Don Evans and Under Secretary
Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Jr. for their leadership and hospitality.
[We need to foster] "economic growth in ways that protect
President George W. Bush
"I have one on my desk at the ranch." President
George W. Bush speaking about NOAA Weather Radio
Secretary Lautenbacher called the visit “a historic day for NOAA. In choosing
NOAA for this event,” he said, “the President clearly recognized the hard
work, innovation and expertise that the entire NOAA team provides for
our Nation every day.”
The Vice Admiral
indicated that the hard work that went into tireless, quick planning for
the visit exemplified a number of NOAA core values, including teamwork,
ingenuity and excellence. “We owe those who made this happen a great measure
of appreciation for making NOAA, its mission, and its team members shine
in front of the President and the American public,” he said.
"In choosing NOAA for this event, the President clearly
recognized the hard work, innovation and expertise that the
entire NOAA team provides for our Nation every day."
Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher,
Under Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere
The President’s visit provided the opportunity to demonstrate firsthand
NOAA’s science efforts in support of public policy on climate change.
President Bush visited a number of NOAA exhibits highlighting NOAA’s work
in the areas of air quality and climate change research and spoke with
several NOAA staff. He lauded NOAA Weather Radio and said he keeps one
on his desk at the ranch.
At NOAA’s six exhibits, Stan Wilson and Jeremy Warren presented details
of the ARGO float, which collects ocean data key to investigating global
climate and weather. Bruce Hicks, Roland Draxler and Glenn Rolph spoke
about air quality affected by the release of hazardous materials into
the lower atmosphere. Tom Karl and Jay Lawrimore focused on climate monitoring.
John D. Cunningham and Dennis Berry spotlighted the future of America’s
"The President's interest in air quality was very evident.
He was clearly gratified that NOAA and EPA provide a good example
of federal agencies working closely together."
Bruce Hicks, Director, Air Resources
Laboratory, NOAA Research
Ants Leetma, Chris Moore and Nancy Soreide talked about ImmersaDesk, which
provides 3-D stereo animations of ocean and atmosphere dynamics. John
Jones and Barbara Watson demonstrated weather forecasting, giving the
President a tour of the National Weather Service’s Web capabilities –
and the forecasts for Korea, where he was headed, and Crawford, Texas.
"I emphasized how NOAA research has led to a better understanding
of major climate anomalies, like the recent droughts in Texas,
and an ability to forecast these seasons in advance." -- Ants
Leetmaa, Director, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Princeton,
"Our exhibit showed President Bush how we are applying climate
research today, and that our forecasts run from minutes to seasons.
The President was very pleased to learn that his hometown has
a cooperative observer collecting weather data." John
Jones, Deputy Director, NOAA's National Weather Service
"We showed the President NOAA's new Web look for local
forecasts. You get it by entering a zip code or city name. We
also gave him the forecast for his pending trip to Korea."
Warning Coordination Meteorologist
National Weather Service Forecast Office, Sterling, VA
"President Bush recognized the potential of ARGO to provide
observations of the global oceans, observations needed to understand
how the oceans influence climate."
Stan Wilson, Director, International
Ocean Programs, NOAA Research
Here's a look
at the President’s visit to NOAA:
Photo by Greg Hernandez