Along with running the free world, President Barack Obama has spent the past seven years guiding U.S. science and technology policy. The initiatives and goals he puts in place—in clean energy, space, medicine, education, nanotechnology, and more—help direct research, which in turn directs the future. With one year left in the Oval Office, the president talks about what he’s achieved, what’s left to do (a lot), and why being a nerd is one of the best ways to serve your country.By Cliff Ransom Photography by F. Scott Schafer
Popular Science: You have been a very pro-science president. Why do you see science and technology as being so important?
Gentleman/Lady Mujer Spot On Sandalias f1r0826 the most convenient Stylish and charming Amoy,WOMENS tan slip on SHOES CLOGS MULES = COLE HAAN = size 9B = fe66,Leather sandals Jesus handmade sandals for women and men, flat strappy sandals,BY351 OLGA RUBINI schuhe schwarz leder nieten damen sandalen,Man/Woman Ladies Rieker Smart Sandals 65860 Selling Modern design Beautiful and charming,leather slippers comfortable slippers designer flats beach slippers flip flops,Kenneth Cole Reaction Frauen Sole Safe 2 Peep Toe leger Platform Sandalen Gold GHaflinger Frauen Pansy Offener Zeh leger Hausschuhe Weiss Groesse 5 US /35.5 EU,Womens Aerosoles Citizen Black Leather Tailored Wedge Sandals Size 9M,Gentleman/Lady Onex Women's Alexandria Dress Sandal Elegant and sturdy set meal Brand Cost-effective,Shi by Journeys Pink Leather Sandals Size US 6M TT2,Nine West Thatfeeli Flat in white, size 10M, retail $80(NEW)Women's TORY BURCH Blue Leather Ankle Strap Thong Sandals Flip Flops Sz 5M!,Not Rated Women's Erra Slide Sandal Green Size 6.5,COLE HAAN SANDALS WOMENS SHOES CHUNKY HEELS SIZE 8 B ALL LEATHER THONG,Ladies Cloudsteppers by Clarks Casual Toe Post Sandals Arla Glison,INC International Concepts Womens Flat Sandals Lt Bronze 5 US / 3 UK,STEVEN by Steve Madden Womens Greece Leather Open Toe Casual Slide Sandals,KILLAH by Miss Sixty Chiara Mujer flache Zapatos de verano TALLA 37 NUEVO,New Madden Girl Red Multi Floral Brando Adjust Strap Comfort Sandal Sizes 6- 11barachini Flip-Flops Laminato Muttern Neu Wert 139E Schuhgrößen 35,36,Very Volatile Frauen Sandalen mit Absatz Schwarz Groesse 7 US /38 EU,B.O.C Frauen Elba Offener Zeh leger Leder Gleit Sandalen Braun Groesse 11 US /42Taryn Rose Womens Jacklyn Satin Open Toe Bridal Slingback SandalsBCBGeneration Womens NELLIE Open Toe Casual Strappy Sandals,Scarpe da Donna Sandalo Rosa Nero Love Moschino Primavera Estate 2018,Reef Cushion Bounce Phantom Brown Men's Sandals RF0A3FD1Vionic Tan Cork Design Leather Comfort Ankle Strap Sandals Women's US 11Callisto Frauen Spring Offener Zeh leger Sandalen mit Keilabsatz Braun Groesse 1,1.4.3. Girl Womens Newsie Fabric Open Toe Casual Ankle Strap Sandals,
PS: Among your White House initiatives, you’ve focused heavily on improving STEM education in America. What’s your proudest achievement on that front?
BO: There’s a lot to be proud of. We now graduate 25,000 more engineers per year from our colleges and universities than we did when I took office. We’re more than halfway toward our goal of preparing 100,000 new math and science teachers by 2021. We’ve secured more than $1 billion of private investment for improving STEM education, and commitments from college and university leadership to help underrepresented students earn STEM degrees. There’s also something that’s harder to measure, but every bit as important: all the young people, including minorities and young women, who are more excited than ever about pursuing their passions for STEM.
One of the new traditions I’ve started as president is the White House Science Fair. We ought to celebrate science fair winners at least as much as Super Bowl winners. And when young people are excited about science, technology, engineering, and math, that’s not just good for them. That’s good for America. We want the next game-changing industry or life-saving breakthrough to happen right here in the United States.
PS: Do you consider yourself a nerd and, if so, what’s your nerdiest pastime?
Pre-owned: An item that has been used or worn previously. See the seller’s listing for full details and ... Read moreabout the condition
Donald J Pliner
|Heel Height:||Med (1 3/4 in. to 2 3/4 in.)||Pattern:||Cutout|
|Style:||Platforms & Wedges||Width:||Medium (B, M)|
|Occasion:||Casual||US Shoe Size (Women's):||9|
|Fastening:||Slip On||Country/Region of Manufacture:||Spain|
PS: You also put heavy emphasis on developing innovation and entrepreneurship. How do you make Silicon Valley happen all over the country?
Sam Edelman Frauen Circus Offener Zeh leger Flache Sandalen Schwarz Groesse 5.5,Rieker Women's Sandals, Sandals Sneakers Grey Soft Inner Sole , V6548 NEW,Birkenstock Kairo Birko-Flor Nubuck 47211 Women's Sandals Flip Flops Khaki,ZIGIny Mariane Women's Flat Sandals Size 9 T-Strap Women's Shoes,Ladies F00035 Slingback Sandals By Leather Collection Sale Now .99Tahari Womens Fiona Fawn Size 8.0 Peu2Ladies Savannah Low Wedge - Diamante X Strap Sandalsax923 EDDY DANIELE shoes black suede studs women sandals,Teva Zirra Sandal Shoe 1000035 Pink Gray Strap Sport Walking Size 9.5Ladies Clarks Suede Wedge Slingback Sandals The Style - Petrina Leigh,Ladies Gabor Wedge Sandals Style 82825 Sizzle-W,Ladies Eaze Wedge Sandal UK Sizes 3 - 8 F3112,Women's Shoes Sanuk Yoga Mat 2 Prints Flip Flops 1095289 Molten Lava *New*Birkis Women's Sandals Size 38 (7 US) B Black 3 Strap Slip On LeatherDonna Anne Michelle Alto Peep Toe Tacco Strass Paillettes Sandali da Sera,Alfani Women's Taby Gladiator Sandals Platinum Snake Skin Print Size 5.5 M,Donna Clarks Sandali con cinturino' Leisa VINO ',Olukai 20110-4848 : Ohana Women's Dark Java/Dark Java Sandal,NWOT"BCBGirls"Pink Bow DHR Basic Low Flip Flop Sandals Thong size 6M SUPER Cute!,Collection Cuir Dames Ouvert Bout Plat Décontracté à Enfiler,ETIENNE AIGNER Women's 8M Black Strappy Leather Slingback Wedge Heels Sandals A2,Steve Madden Womens Seeri Slingback Thong Sandal Shoe, Yellow, US 7,Light Blue Printed-Colorful Cross Buckles Leather Slide,Men's/Women's Sbicca Women's peaceout Ankle Bootie selling price Excellent performance Don't worry when shopping,Man/Woman Vaneli Womens Martey Diverse new design Primary quality Selling new productsWomen's Yellow Blue & Pink Suede Wedge Sandal US Size 9,LADIES LEATHER COLLECTION GOLD MULTI SLIP ON SANDALS WITH BEADED DETAIL-F0896,Gentlemen/Ladies Qupid Women's Everly-22 Heeled Sandal Special price Excellent performance King of the crowd,Teva Women's Mush Mandalyn Wedge Ola 2BCBGeneration Womens Jax Open Toe Special Occasion Strappy Sandals,
BO: When it comes to precision medicine, advances in technology, data science, and clinical research are already curing diseases that were once thought to be incurable. It’s entirely possible that a decade or two from now, treatments would be tailored not just to the disease, but also to the individual patient. We’re being careful to protect patient data and to make participants partners in this work. Because if we embrace precision medicine in the right way, the possibilities for better treatments are practically endless.
The BRAIN Initiative is another project whose time has come. Right now, we can identify galaxies billions of light-years away. We can study particles smaller than an atom. But we still haven’t unlocked the mystery of the 3 pounds of matter that sits between our ears. I believe that with America leading the way, we can change that. Hundreds of scientists and dozens of universities, companies, foundations, and other organizations have stepped up to help us tackle this challenge.
PS: You’ve also advocated the development of a private space industry to work alongside and complement government efforts. What is your vision for space exploration and commercialization? Who does what?
BO: I’ve laid out a vision for space exploration where our astronauts travel out into the solar system not just to visit, but to stay. To build a sustainable human presence in space, we’ll need a thriving private-sector space economy. I see the expanding space industry as an addition to, not a replacement for, the extraordinary work of NASA. With industry taking over tasks like ferrying cargo and crew to the International Space Station, NASA can focus even more intensely on the most challenging exploration missions, like landing astronauts on Mars or learning more about Earth and the rest of our solar system.
As we set our sights toward other planets, we can also create good jobs here on this one. American companies have begun to reclaim the lucrative market for launching commercial satellites. That’s just one example of the way that a growing space economy can help American workers succeed.
PS: If you were to end up on Mars, who would you want as your companion: Mark Watney from The Martian, or Ellen Ripley from Alien?
BO: As long as it’s a hypothetical question, can’t I pick both? If I’ve got Matt Damon growing potatoes and Sigourney Weaver taking care of any unwelcome intruders, I like my chances.
PS: It’s been barely two months since a climate agreement was struck in Paris. How do you think the agreement will be remembered 20 years from now?
BO: I believe the Paris agreement can be a turning point for our planet. It’s the biggest single step the world has ever taken toward combating global climate change. When I traveled to Paris at the beginning of the climate conference, I said we needed an enduring agreement that reduces global carbon emissions and commits the world to a low-carbon future. That’s exactly what we achieved.
The American people should be proud because this historic agreement is a tribute to American leadership. The skeptics said that taking action to transition to a clean-energy economy would kill jobs. Instead, we’ve seen the longest streak of private-sector job creation in history. We’ve driven our economic output to all-time highs, while driving our carbon pollution to its lowest level in nearly two decades.
These kinds of concrete steps helped bring more countries to the table. With our historic joint announcement with China last year, we showed it was possible to bridge the old divides between developed and developing nations that had stymied global progress for too long. And that accomplishment inspired dozens and dozens of other nations to follow our lead and set ambitious climate targets of their own.
BO: Before you can solve a problem, you have to understand it. That’s why we’ve fought hard to protect the funding for the U.S. Global Change Research Program, a government-wide effort to help us see what’s happening in the present so we can better predict the future. Thanks to their efforts, our satellites, aircraft, ships, buoys, and terrestrial-monitoring systems are providing indispensable insights and strengthening the models that tell us what to expect going forward.
My administration hasn’t just helped to advance climate science—we’ve also made good use of the results. We used the most up-to-date insights from climate science as the basis of our national Climate Action Plan. And we’ve begun to develop accessible climate databases and tools that help governments, businesses, and citizens protect themselves from the effects of climate change that we can’t avoid.
President Obama, photographed on January 4 at the White House
BO: Fifteen of the planet’s 16 warmest years have come in the first 16 years of the 21st century. The warmest year yet was 2015. The Pentagon is warning us that climate change will threaten our national security by fostering instability overseas. Here at home, we’re seeing longer and more dangerous wildfire seasons, coupled with devastating droughts. Last year I visited Alaska, where towns are literally being swallowed up by rising sea levels. Miami now routinely floods at high tide. So this debate is over. The question now is what we do about climate change because there is such a thing as being too late. And I think that regardless of their party, if candidates for elected office want to resign your children and grandchildren to a world that’s broken beyond repair, then there’s simply no way they deserve your vote.
BO: Well, here’s what we’ve done. Over the past seven years, we have transformed America into the global leader in fighting climate change. We’ve set new fuel standards for cars and trucks, invested more than any administration in history in growing industries like wind and solar, taken unprecedented steps to protect our natural resources, and set limits on the amount of carbon pollution that power plants can dump into the air. Most important, we’ve proved that we don’t have to choose between a growing economy and a safer planet for future generations. We can have both.
But in the end, when I think about our efforts to combat climate change, I don’t just think about CO2 emissions levels or degrees of global temperature rise. I think about my two girls, and the grandchildren I’d hope to have one day. I imagine myself pushing a little boy or girl on a swing set, out in the open air, looking up at the sun. In that moment, I want to know that the planet’s going to be in pretty good shape. And I want to have contributed to that.
Because that’s our goal: to leave behind a better, safer, more prosperous world for our kids and grandkids. That’s our most important mission in the time we have on Earth. And after seven years as president, I’ve never been more confident that together, we’ll succeed.