Saturday’s federal budget cuts could affect needed weather data. Some of the areas affected by the cuts include the Interior Department’s Geological Survey Branch and the Remote Sensing Phenology staff. They track the timing of growing seasons for vegetation, used to study invasive species, diets of wild animals and episodes of severe crop drought. The Nation’s Polar Satellite Program incorporates satellites that contribute to the accuracy of weather models. The Government Accountability Office pre-emptively placed the satellite on its high risk list. NOAA’s satellite system works in conjunction with NASA with no expected budget reductions, however the Aerospace Industries Association reports the Goddard Space Center is responsible for observation satellites, which will be reduced.

Fastcast: A beauty.