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Agency director defends US climate service proposal

Jane Lubchenco, head of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), was on Capitol Hill this morning, pleading for permission to reorganize her agency. NOAA is the parent agency to the National Weather Service, and Lubchenco would like to pull the various climate research and forecasting parts of the agency together under a similar National Climate Service. But what might seem like a housekeeping measure—reorganizing within the agency, and with no change in overall funding levels—has become politically hot. The reason? The word ‘climate,’ which in Washington DC this summer is hotter than the hottest potato. In April, an 

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