The National Research Council's Office of Earth Sciences (OES) and the office's advisory board are anxious to have the assistance of earth scientists in advancing the office's work, according to a recent statement by John C. Crowell, OES chairman. He identified the responsibilities of OES as continued awareness and active concern for the health of the earth sciences; identification of opportunities for the earth sciences in meeting national needs; and fostering awareness of scientific advances that may help to resolve national problems. Crowell invited atmospheric, oceanographic, and solid-earth scientists to suggest activities at the national level to the office and its advisory board.
The OES uses the solicited suggestions to complement its perception of important national topics that need attention. Research is not supported, but the suggestions receive attention in several ways, Crowell explained. They are sent to appropriate units of the National Research Council when related activity is underway. In some cases, a suggestion may result in the establishment of an independent committee to study and report on the topic. For example, a report is being prepared on the geological aspects of industrial waste disposal. Such reports are usually read by government officials, scientists in the field, and the public.