On June 18, 2010, the NSC Alliance wrote to Representative Madeleine Bordallo (D-Guam) to thank her for recognizing the importance of scientific collections to our capacity to understand how the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will influence the biological systems of the Gulf of Mexico. Bordallo is Chair of the House Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans and Wildlife. Her panel recently held a hearing during which Dr. Jonathan Coddington, associate director of research and collections at the National Museum of Natural History, testified about the importance of natural history collections to describing quantitatively the pre-spill Gulf of Mexico ecosystem. These collections document the biological diversity of the region prior to the oil spill, and will contribute to assessments of the spill’s environmental impacts.
NSC Alliance also noted that science collections are equally important to basic science and to understanding or mitigating the effects of other environmental and public health problems. The letter drew attention to the NSC Alliance request that President Obama promulgate an Executive Order for the Preservation and Use of Science Collections.
The complete letter is available here.