The NSC Alliance provided testimony to the House and Senate Appropriations Committees regarding fiscal year (FY) 2021 funding for certain programs that curate natural history collections within the Department of the Interior and Smithsonian Institution.
Scientific collections, and the collections professionals and scientists who make, care for, and study these resources, are a vital component of our nation’s research infrastructure. These collections contribute to the expansion of our bioeconomy. Whether held at a museum, government managed laboratory or archive, or in a university science department, these scientific resources form a coordinated network of data (for example, genetic, tissue, organism, and environmental) that are a unique and irreplaceable foundation from which scientists are studying and explaining past and present life on earth. Research results improve human and environmental health, enhance food security, and provide monitoring for responses to environmental change and species conservation.
The testimony called for new investments within the Department of the Interior and the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History. NSC Alliance requested Congress to provide the U.S. Geological Survey with at least $1.35 billion and the National Museum of Natural History with at least $55 million in FY 2021.