In his final public speech in D.C., Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz rolled out the first annual report on the state of the Department of Energy national laboratories alongside an enhanced scientific integrity policy that now applies to all DOE employees, including those at the labs.
On Monday, the House passed a weather research and forecasting innovation bill that has been four years in the making. It is slightly different from a version the Senate passed in December which the House chose not to consider before the end of the 114th Congress.
The current President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology held its final meeting on Jan. 6. On the agenda were a new report on maintaining U.S. competitiveness in the semiconductor industry, a biennial review of the National Nanotechnology Initiative, and an addendum to PCAST’s September report on forensic science. The meeting closed with reflection on the council’s eight years of work under President Obama.
Among his final actions in office over the past month, President Obama signed three major research-related bills into law: the 21st Century Cures Act, the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act, and the National Defense Authorization Act.
The National Science and Technology Council has increased the pace of its report releases during the waning days of the Obama administration. Recent releases address national disaster preparedness and resilience, open access to federally supported research, Arctic research, and the use of alternatives to radioisotopic sources, among other policy priorities.