Financial support for undergraduate studies in environmental sciences is available from the National Center for Environmental Research, a unit of the EPA Office of Research and Development. The fellowships are offered through the Greater Research Opportunities program and are intended to help defray costs associated with environmentally oriented study leading to a bachelor’s degree. The EPA plans to award approximately 40 new fellowships in the summer of 2013. Awardees will receive support for their junior and senior years of undergraduate study and for an internship at an EPA facility during the summer of their junior year. Each fellowship provides up to $20,700 per year of academic support and $8,600 for internship support for a combined total of up to $50,000 over the life of the fellowship. The deadline for receipt of applications is December 5, 2012. Visit http://epa.gov/ncer/rfa/2013/2013_gro_undergrad.html for more information.
Last week, the U.S. Senate Finance Committee reported to the full Senate S. 3568, a bill to create a Citrus Disease Research and Development Trust Fund, with a recommendation that the bill be adopted. The Trust Fund would support research on diseases impacting the citrus industry. If enacted, this legislation would provide a dedicated source of funding for scientific research, technical assistance, and development activities to combat citrus diseases and pests, both domestic and invasive. The Trust Fund would be financed through tariff revenues on citrus and citrus products up to a total of $30 million per year. Under the bill, the Secretary of Agriculture would expend the funds based on the advice of a Citrus Advisory Board. The bill also includes provision related to cotton and wool tariffs and would be slated to expire after five years. It is unclear whether the legislation will be enacted before the end of the year. The legislation was sponsored by Senator Nelson of Florida, and Senators Feinstein and Boxer of California. It is also unclear how or if this will impact current funding for citrus disease. While the appropriations committees have eliminated earmarks or designated funding for specific crops or diseases, tariff legislation is not subject to the same agreement. Stay tuned for future updates.
In what is billed as the largest number of calls ever issued, €8.1 Billion will be available under the European Union’s call for proposals issued yesterday under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). For many disciplinary fields, this will be the last call before the next framework programme, Horizon 2020, begins in 2014.
A few of the topic areas relevant to plant pathologists are: