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February 12, 2018

Budget Focuses on Priorities Supporting American Resource Prosperity and Security

President Donald Trump today proposed an $859.7 million Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) budget for the U.S. Geological Survey, which prioritizes effective stewardship of America’s natural resources and scientific inquiry.


“The President’s proposed budget allows USGS to prioritize its mission of providing the nation reliable scientific information while also helping ensure American security and resource prosperity are paramount,” said Dr. Tim Petty, U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary for Water and Science.


Conserving our land and water: The USGS seeks to understand the impacts to the Nation’s land, water and species challenges through scientific monitoring and research. The 2019 budget provides the following:

  • Development of the Landsat 9 ground station, keeping pace with NASA satellite development in order to meet a fiscal year 2021 launch of Landsat 9
  • Monitoring of the National Water Census, which provides daily water budget estimates for small watersheds that enable resource managers to make near-real time, local management decisions with regard to water availability
  • Furthering the 3D Elevation Program (3DEP), which responds to growing needs for high-quality, three-dimensional topographic data representations of the Nation's natural and constructed features
  • Monitoring wildlife health and detecting invasive species impact


Generating revenue and utilizing our natural resources: Energy resources are a critical component of the Nation’s economy. The USGS provides science that helps inform stewardship of American energy resources to meet our security and economic needs. The 2019 USGS budget will support the following:

  • Resource estimates of undiscovered, technically recoverable hydrocarbon resources present within Alaska’s North Slope
  • Topographic and geological maps, geophysical and geochemical surveys, together with scientific research on mineral resources to produce resource assessments imperative to understanding the Nation’s mineral endowment
  • Identifying domestic sources of critical minerals, including an initiative, the “Three Dimensional Mapping Economic Empowerment Program,” a comprehensive "shovel-ready" program to identify U.S. mineral resources that would reduce mineral import dependence


Expanding outdoor recreation and access:  USGS data and research support the hunting and recreational fishing sectors that generate $144 billion in expenditures annually and 480,000 American jobs. The 2019 budget will fund the following:

  • Continued work with a vast array of partners to provide science support to management agencies designed to sustain harvest of game, waterfowl, fish, and furbearing animals for the hunting, fishing, and wildlife-related sporting and recreation needs of the public
  • Continued studies in to the occurrences, origins, and health implications of pathogens and contaminants (such as harmful algal toxins, metals, and other compounds) in waters, rocks, soils, and dusts on public lands 


Fulfilling our trust and insular responsibilities: Combining traditional ecological knowledge with empirical studies allows the USGS and Native American governments, organizations, and people to increase their mutual understanding and respect for this land.  In 2019, the USGS budget will support the following:

  • Tribal self-determination and sovereignty by providing information, technical assistance, and training to Tribes, enabling them to address the complex natural resource issues they face throughout Native American lands
  • Monitoring and research activities across the Nation including an extensive network of streamflow gages and groundwater monitoring stations; training and technical assistance; data management and quality control; Geographic Information Systems; fish and wildlife assessment and monitoring; development of models and decision-making tools
  • Integration of tribal and indigenous ecological knowledge with more traditional science in management decisions and engagement in tribal outreach efforts


Protecting our people and the border: USGS natural hazards science informs a broad range of disaster planning, situational awareness and response activities at local to global levels.  The 2019 budget will enable the following:

  • Modernizing the highest priority Alaska volcano monitoring networks with digital communication and instrumentation
  • Continuing expansion of data collection networks that improve our capacity to provide information during extreme events.  The USGS will continue to expand the present library of flood-inundation maps, which provide emergency officials the information needed to predict the extent of a flood hours or even days before it occurs
  • Expanding use of Rapid Deployment Gages, temporary water-stage sensors with autonomous data-transmission capacity, which provide short-term water-level and meteorological data during an event for areas that are particularly vulnerable to the effects of flooding and storm surge


Modernizing our organization and infrastructure for the next 100 years: The goal of the USGS is to balance mission delivery demands with adequate investments in operations and maintenance to sustain the portfolio in an appropriate condition befitting of our role as America’s stewards. The 2019 budget will enable the USGS to do the following:

  • Continuing partnerships with State Geological Surveys and academic institutions for bedrock and surficial geological mapping to increase U.S. geological map coverage at a scale useable for energy and mineral exploration and raw material assessment
  • Protecting its critical information assets from cyber exploitation and attack to ensure that employees and the public can rely on the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the USGS’s data and information systems
  • Implementing advanced technologies that will increase visibility into its information management and technology environment, improve protections around our high‐value information assets, and empower its workforce to better detect, respond, and recover from cyber‐attacks and breaches


The USGS FY 2019 Budget at Justification is available here, and additional details on the President's FY 2019 Budget are available on the Department’s website.

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