I was concerned and distressed when I read the Dec. 26 news article "Interior cuts number of scientists sent to gathering," about the Trump administration's decision to severely limit the number of U.S. Geological Survey scientists who could attend the annual American Geophysical Union conference in New Orleans. Some who were scheduled to present research on a world stage to their peers were denied the opportunity to attend and notified within days of their flights. This was one of the most important annual scientific opportunities for scientists to meet, discuss and present innovations before other scientists, assembled from the entire globe.

For 50 years as a scientist and educator in secondary schools and universities, I emphasized the importance of leading-edge scientific research presented among peers for dissemination of important new technologies as well as scrutiny, the most important parts of the scientific method.

The USGS scientists are dedicated public servants helping Americans with natural disasters, agricultural planning, land usage, water resources, climate change, fire management, development of geological resources including renewables and much more.

Wayne Wolfersberger, Frederick