News, legislation, and events!

Posted: December 3, 2012 in Ethics, Events, Jobs, Policy, Science

Washington State Governor Chris Gregorire has signed an order directing state officials to work on addressing ocean acidification. “Gov. Gregoire wants to move forward with a first-in-the-nation effort. But the incoming governor and the next Legislature will have a lot to say on how to tackle the problem.”

“The team of scientists operating NASA’s Curiosity rover has found organic materials on Mars — but isn’t sure whether the carbon-containing compounds are indigenous to the planet.”

“The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) will continue a policy that allows grant applicants just one resubmission if their proposal is rejected the first time, the agency announced today.”

“The planet’s two largest ice sheets have been losing ice faster during the past decade, causing widespread confusion and concern. A new international study provides a firmer read on the state of continental ice sheets and how much they are contributing to sea-level rise.”

“Researchers can find plenty to like in a US budget scenario that scientific societies are comparing to the apocalypse, says Colin Macilwain.”

“On Saturday, the board of trustees of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) voted to approve the final text of the DSM-5, the next revision to the leading manual for diagnosing mental illness.”

“The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) today delivered its final verdict on a controversial study that examined the toxicity of genetically modified (GM) maize. The study “does not meet acceptable scientific standards” and there is therefore no need to reevaluate the safety of GM maize, the group concluded.”

Action Alert from ASPET calling on members to contact their elected officials in opposition of the S. 810, the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act (GAPCSA).

“When the new Congress convenes in January, Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX) will chair the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee. Smith will replace Ralph Hall (R-TX) who has chaired the committee since January 2011.”

“Just two months after rejecting a nearly identical immigration measure, members of the US House of Representatives passed a bill on 30 November to grant permanent residency for up to 55,000 foreign researchers with US degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

The bill would provide so-called ‘green-card’ status to the scientists and engineers by eliminating the diversity visa lottery, which currently awards those green cards randomly to citizens of underrepresented countries.

The Democratic-controlled Senate is unlikely to support the latest measure, however. Republican and Democratic decision-makers have expressed growing consensus on the need to expand high-skilled immigration, but they have clashed on balancing STEM immigration with other aspects of US immigration reform, including the diversity visa lottery.”

“Richard Nakamura, a psychologist and longtime administrator at the National Institutes of Health, has been named director of the agency’s Center for Scientific Review (CSR), which oversees the $30 billion agency’s enormous peer review system.”

AAAS News and Notes, including pieces covering sequestration, science diplomacy news, the Kavli Science Journalism winners, and newly elected AAAS Fellows.

Science writer Paul Tullis explains multiple was President Obama can combat climate change in his second turn without action from Congress.

AAAS names 11 UW professors as fellows.



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