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  15 October 2002

To: The UNAVCO Community
From: Will Prescott, President, UNAVCO, Inc.
Subject: News and Information

We have received many comments on the
draft PBO proposal.
Rather than try to respond to all of the individual comments, I would 
like to provide a summary response to some of the overarching themes 
in the comments.

The absence of adequate science justification was the strongest 
comment we received. The existing PBO draft is intended to describe 
the implementation plan. The current draft of the PBO proposal is not 
the complete Earthscope proposal. The justification will be present 
in the complete proposal. The goal of this proposal is a little 
different than a typical science proposal.  The decision to fund 
Earthscope will likely to be made by Congress before this proposal is 
evaluated. The purpose of the proposal is to convince readers that a) 
we understand the goals of Earthscope, b) have a sound plan for 
constructing the facility, and c) our proposal is the best among any 
competing proposals for building it. But having said that, I agree it 
is absolutely necessary to present a case for how the proposed PBO 
facility will address PBO science goals.

There was much discussion of the Regional Scientist concept.  These 
comments convinced me that this was a fatally flawed idea. I have 
replaced it with a series of Advisory groups (one each for: 
Volcanoes, Transform boundaries, Subduction boundaries, and 
Intraplate regions). We are discussing how these groups will interact 
with Earthscope as a whole.

Commenters were concerned that we didn't fully appreciate the 
difficulties in permitting sites. The current plan is to have a 
consulting company do
bulk permitting for BLM, Forest Service, Park Service and scientifically
critical sites particularly in Northern and Southern California  (due to
strict environmental compliance) as identified by advisory groups.
Regional Engineers will be responsible for all reconnaissance and other
permitting activities utilizing scientific contacts and state county and
city governments with a primary focus on getting their survey groups behind
this.  A permitting coordinator will track and manage the entire process.
We have budgeted $5K per site for permitting activities.

Commenters found the monumenting plans confusing and at variance with 
previous discussions. We have changed the plan. We now propose to: a) 
use the deep-drilled-braced (Wyatt) monument as the default 
everywhere; b) use a short-drilled-braced monument in locations where 
there is good rock and access is difficult; and, c) for locations 
where it is not possible to bring in a drill rig (for a Wyatt mark), 
and where rock is not adequate for a short-drilled-braced mark, 
decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis (either abandon or use 
another mark type).

There was much discussion about the absence of Canada and Mexico in 
the plan. NSF is suggesting that areas in Canada and Mexico should be 
filled in through cooperative programs with our neighbors. We will 
include language in the proposal to recognize that. Advisory groups 
should work to facilitate this cooperation and to identify resources 
for it.

There was concern that not enough information has been provided to 
evaluate the budget. We are continuing to work on refining the budget 
and on presenting it in more meaningful ways.  Inevitably, this 
process will continue beyond the proposal preparation stage and into 
the implementation stage, should the proposal be funded. Much more 
detail is available on the web now than was available when we first 
released the draft proposal.

We received many other comments on issues large and small. We are 
working to refine the PBO proposal and to merge it with USArray and 
SAFOD proposals. I look forward to your comments on future versions.

Regards,
Will Prescott

Last modified: Wednesday, 08-Jul-2015 16:00:45 UTC

 

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