Target: NASA Administrator Charles Bolden
Goal: Praise NASA for its decision to make all scientific research funded by the organization free to access online.
NASA just launched a new public website allowing anyone to access 831 research articles that were self-funded by the organization. Visitors will not have to pay anything to access this incredible amount of scientific data, which includes articles on climate science and environmentalist topics. Research like this could be used by professional and amateur scientists across the globe to facilitate further research and technological innovations that could significantly benefit the human race and all other life on Earth.
This decision follows an increasing trend of finding ways to make important scientific research completely accessible to the public in order to facilitate scientific discovery. People have become increasingly frustrated by the necessity to pay for research articles that are owned by a small number of for-profit publishing companies. Though NASA can’t publish all of its research, the majority has gone onto the new PubSpace database, and there’s more to come.
Scientific research, particularly on the subjects of the climate and other things that affect every living thing on the planet, should be readily available to anyone who wants it. Science is supposed to be about facilitating curiosity and innovation to make the world a better place, not about profit. Sign our petition to thank NASA for upholding these values by making so much of its research free to the public.
Applaud President Obama’s Creation of National Monument.
The Great North Woods - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services
Target: President Barack Obama
Goal: Applaud the designation of Maine’s North Woods as a national monument, the largest along the East Coast.
President Obama designated Maine’s North Woods as a national monument in honor of the National Park Service’s centennial using executive action. Such an action will make North Woods the largest national monument on the East Coast and will protect 87,500 acres of forestland and riverbed that are home to bears, lynx, and rare species of American birds.
The land was donated to the federal government by Roxanne Quimby, co-founder of Burt’s Bees. Until now, the Quimby family maintained the land and even built facilities for visitors on the property. The gift of the land is worth about $100 million, a generous amount for a struggling park system. With miles of hiking trails and camping areas, the park will be open to snowmobiling, fishing, and hunting (though no hunting of bears will be allowed).
The president’s action has not been without controversy. Politicians and some residents of Main view his action as overreach and believe that establishing a national park will be detrimental to the logging industries in surrounding towns. However, thousands of tourists are expected to visit the national monument and that may have a more positive effect on the economy than the environmentally damaging practice of logging.
With the establishment of North Woods as a national monument, President Obama has declared nearly two dozen national monuments under the park system while in office. Thank the President for taking action to protect our nation’s unique environment and rare species for the enjoyment and wonderment of all citizens and future generations.