Keep in mind this isn’t law yet, but Loren Grush has the details:
Some notable missions are canceled under the request, including NASA’s contentious Asteroid Redirect Mission — an initiative to robotically retrieve a piece of an asteroid and bring it into the vicinity of the Moon. A mission to land on Jupiter’s moon Europa is also canceled, though a mission to fly by the icy world, known as the Europa Clipper mission, made the cut. Meanwhile, the proposal doesn’t call for any major changes in focus for NASA’s human exploration program. There’s no language about a return to the Moon, so the agency is still ostensibly on a “Journey to Mars” for now.
Under Trump, NASA will continue to work with private space companies such as Boeing, SpaceX and more to “support and expand public-private partnerships as the foundation of future U.S. civilian space efforts.”
Worryingly — but not surprisingly — the budget cuts back on Earth science programs and would completely eliminate NASA’s education program. Comments have been made that this will fall under the agency’s science program, but time will tell. Additionally, DSCOVR will go dark if the budget is approved.
As we spoke about on this week’s episode of Liftoff, there aren’t many surprises here. The Asteroid Redirect Mission has long been disliked by Republicans, and the party generally favors human exploration of Earth science, not to mention studying climate change.
I’d argue that NASA is uniquely suited to study our planet, and should be allowed to continue to do so. It’s the only home we’ve got, no matter what side of the aisle you are on.