March 4, 2017 / 1:34 AM / 6 months ago

White House seeking sharp budget cut to climate agency: Washington Post

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Trump administration is seeking a 17 percent cut to the budget of the government's meteorological agency that monitors the climate and issues daily weather forecasts, the Washington Post reported on Friday.

Citing a four-page budget memo, the Post said the proposed reductions in the budget of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) would affect research and satellite programs and eliminate funding for some smaller programs.

The NOAA is part of the Commerce Department, whose overall budget "would be hit by an overall 18 percent reduction from its current funding level," it said.

The paper did not give a total figure for the proposed cuts, but said the White House Office of Management and Budget outline for the Commerce Department's budget for fiscal year 2018 included sharp reductions for specific parts of the NOAA.

The agency's satellite data division would lose $513 million, or 22 percent, of its current funding under the proposal, and its Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research would lose $126 million, or 26 percent, the Post said.

The paper said a spokesperson for the Commerce Department declined to comment, and that an unnamed White House official said the process was "evolving" and cautioned against specific numbers.

Reporting by Washington Newsroom; Editing by Sandra Maler

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