03/28/2008 02:44 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The Climate Spacecraft "That Could Save The World" -- Killed

Somewhere in Maryland is a metal box containing a fully completed climate spacecraft that could save the world.

NASA's Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) cost over $100 million and was designed to measure the energy budget of our warming planet. Yet the spacecraft has remained in its box for the last five years and it looks like it is not going anywhere anytime soon.

NASA quietly cancelled the project altogether in January 2006 citing "competing priorities".

What happened? How could the US government possibly justify killing DSCOVR given the importance of climate change and after over 90% of the project expenses had already been incurred? What role did petty partisan politics play in this? Did the oil lobby have any influence on this decision?

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