Senate Appropriations Committee

Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee

A Review of the President’s Fiscal Year 2025 Budget Request for the Department of Commerce

192 Dirksen
Wed, 15 May 2024 18:30:00 GMT

Subcommittee hearing on the FY2025 budget request for the Department of Commerce. The budget proposes $11.4 billion in discretionary funding and $4 billion in mandatory funding.

Chair Shaheen

  • Gina M. Raimondo, Secretary, Department of Commerce

The Budget includes $6.6 billion for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), $188 million or 3% more than the FY 2024 Annualized CR. This NOAA Budget prioritizes operations, infrastructure, and continuing initiatives that provide the environmental intelligence necessary to make informed oceans, coastal, fisheries, weather, and climate decisions. The Budget is bolstered by funds previously provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act. The Administration continues its commitment to the Nation’s weather and climate satellite enterprise by providing $2.1 billion for the Nation’s weather and climate satellites, $430 million above the FY 2024 Annualized CR level. FY 2025 funding will enable NOAA to maintain all current satellite programs by including $84 million for Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites R Series (GOES-R), $342 million for Polar Weather Satellites (PWS), and $40 million for Space Weather Follow On (SWFO). The Budget also continues strategic investments in the next generation of climate, weather, and space weather satellites to continue development of world leading, mission-driven weather satellite programs that will offer new state-of-the-art capabilities to improve forecasting.

The Budget provides $798 million for Geostationary Extended Observations (GeoXO), $68 million for Low Earth Orbit Weather Satellites, and $237 million for Space Weather Next. The Budget further invests in NOAA’s weather and climate enterprise. Specifically, it funds the National Weather Service (NWS) at $1.4 billion. At this level, the NWS will continue to operate and maintain 122 Weather Forecast Offices (WFO), 13 River Forecast Centers (RFC), 18 Weather Service Offices (WSO), and associated employee housing units, and 9 National Centers. NOAA’s Budget also includes $212 million for NOAA’s climate research programs to support the ongoing work of the National Climate Assessment and continue high-priority long-term observing, monitoring, researching, and modeling activities.

The Budget also includes an additional $10 million for Mitchell Act Hatcheries in the Columbia River Basin, complementing the resources previously provided in the Inflation Reduction Act. These additional funds are part of the Administration’s commitment to prioritize the restoration of healthy and abundant wild salmon, steelhead, and other native fish populations to the Columbia River Basin, and honor the United States’ obligations to tribal nations. The Budget also invests in expanding offshore energy while conserving and protecting high-priority natural resources.

The Budget provides NOAA $53 million to expand offshore wind permitting, a $31 million increase above the FY 2024 Annualized CR. This funding will enable NOAA to use the best available science to help support the goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore energy by 2030 while protecting biodiversity and promoting sustainable ocean co-use. It also provides $86 million, a $18.2 million increase above the FY 2024 Annualized CR, to support National Marine Sanctuaries and Marine Protected Areas as part of the Administration’s America the Beautiful initiative, which aims to conserve at least 30 percent of U.S. lands and waters by 2030. With this funding NOAA will expand critical conservation work and support the designation process for additional sanctuaries.

Additionally, the Budget provides the Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO) a net increase of $71 million above the 2024 Annualized CR. These include increases across Marine Operations and Maintenance, Aviation Operations and Aircraft Services, and NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, to support expanded marine and aviation operations to support increased efforts to collect high quality data, enhance public safety, and improve understanding of climate-induced impacts on communities and ecosystems. OMAO’s budget also includes $21 million, an increase of $17 million above the FY 2024 Annualized CR, to finalize a second specialized high-altitude G-550 Hurricane Hunter to meet national needs.