The James Webb Telescope (JWT), a space-borne observatory which was to be the next generation for the Hubble Space Telescope, may be canceled if the united states House of Congress has its way. They have just released their Appropriations Bill, which mandates brutal funding slashes across the sciences, and specifically calls for the JWT project to be canceled.
Part of the reasoning behind this decision is that construction of the telescope is way behind schedule and very far over budget. But it’s almost complete. To stop now, when they are so close to finally getting a return on their investment seems crazy to me. And let’s not forget that the Hubble telescope was beset by similar delays and expenses. Think about how much we’ve learned from Hubble, and what we would have missed discovering if they’d canceled that project too!
If you are a US citizen, this is your chance to do something about it. Avoid petitions, comments, or tweets – none of that stuff gets taken seriously. Instead, write personally to your local representative and ask them to please keep the program running. The more voices they hear crying to protect the James Webb Telescope, the better it’s chances of surviving till launch time.