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1 Earth Sciences in the 21st Century
Pages 7-12

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From page 7...
... took a first major step forward in as earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis; locating min- elevating the stature of the Earth sciences within NSF by eral and fossil fuel resources; and characterizing the pursuing EarthScope, a Major Research Equipment and history of the climate system. Looking forward to Facilities Construction (MREFC)
From page 8...
... Emerging research opportuni- funding across all agencies and depicts a decline in fundties defined later in this report will require comparable ing as a percentage of total research funding for basic efforts to achieve their objectives; EarthScope has and applied research. This drop in overall percentage of demonstrated that the Earth science community and research funding has been accompanied by a relative EAR can successfully meet these challenges, and NSF increase in the percentage of geosciences funding for will need to recognize the importance and viability universities, which is the domain where NSF and EAR of enhancing investment in basic research in this dis- play a predominant role.
From page 9...
... . deep Earth processes and interdisciplinary EAR and other government agency pro research with fields such as ocean and atmo- grams, industry, and international programs.
From page 10...
... Relevance of the Earth Sciences Answering these questions, which the NROES com- The world's population is expected to reach 7 bilmittee agrees are fundamental to the field, will take lion by the end of 2011, and about 9.2 billion by 2050, sustained and intense effort and the preparation of relentlessly increasing the demand for food, fuel, raw new generations of researchers capable of building materials, and water.1 Much of this population will conon current understanding and overcoming current tinue to be concentrated near dynamic coastal zones, limitations. and meeting the requirements of this population and The essential role of EAR is to support basic understanding associated impacts on the environment research on acquiring fundamental knowledge about is a key area to which the Earth sciences contribute.
From page 11...
... Efforts to mitigate natural hazards rely on precise Soils provide essential resources for agriculture, observations and quantitative understanding of the water filtration, and construction and manufacturing phenomena that are involved. Broadly based EAR activities, and understanding these biologically active, r esearch programs that address the fundamental intricately structured porous media requires the fun- nature of the dynamic geosystems underlying natural
From page 12...
... Indeed, Quantifying complex geosystems requires extensive there are common themes manifested in all of the findmeasurement of the fluxes, structures, and evolution ings and recommendations from this updated report; of the systems. Recognition of this has guided EAR technique development, observations on suitable spatial toward developing facilities capable of making the and temporal scales, and integrative simulation efforts spatial and temporal measurements essential to under- underlie all of the frontiers in basic Earth science standing the dynamical geosystems.

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