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Chairwoman Johnson and Ranking Member Lucas Asks OSTP Director Lander to Protect Spectrum Access

Press Release From: House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Posted: Monday, November 8, 2021

(Washington, DC) – On Friday, Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) and Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-OK) sent a letter to Dr. Eric Lander, Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, recommending that he issue a charge to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) to report on strategies for protecting and enabling spectrum access and quality for science and operational applications. As demand for spectrum for mobile applications has increased drastically in recent years, spectrum-dependent scientific fields and operational functions such as weather forecasting are facing increasing threats to their spectrum equities due to harmful interference.

“As you know, scientific research across natural science disciplines, including astronomy, climate science, and other Earth and environmental sciences, all depend upon the radio-frequency spectrum for active and passive remote sensing and other methods of data collection,” said Chairwoman Johnson and Ranking Member Lucas in the letter. “As demand for spectrum for mobile applications has increased drastically in recent years, spectrum-dependent scientific fields and operational functions such as weather forecasting are facing increasing threats to their spectrum equities, including bands coordinated domestically and internationally, due to harmful interference. Both privately- and federally-funded research and operational science may be affected, including environmental observation, operational weather forecasting, and radioastronomy activities within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the National Science Foundation (NSF). Due to these concerns, we respectfully request that the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) prepare a report on strategies for protecting and enabling spectrum access and quality for science and operational applications.”

A copy of the full letter can be found here.
 

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