2016 Presidential Science, Tech, Health, and Environmental Forum

What are the top science, tech, health, and environmental questions the candidates for president should answer?

INSTRUCTIONS:
A) Be sure to vote on existing questions.
B) Address your question to the candidates and ask about their policy positions. Don’t ask rhetorical questions. Ask your question in summary form (your “headline” question), then a new window will open up, where you should:
C) Provide more detail in a 2-part format:
1) Declarative statement (1-2 sentences max) describing the situation and context, followed by
2) Question (1 sentence) asking what they will do about it if elected.

FOLLOW THIS EXAMPLE FROM 2012:
What priority will you give to funding scientific research?
Federally funded research has helped to produce America’s major postwar economies and to ensure our national security, but today the UK, Singapore, China, and Korea are making competitive investments in research. Given that the next Congress will face spending constraints, what priority would you give to investment in research in your upcoming budgets?

A top science question the candidates for president should answer is:

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  1. How will you create a culture of scientific integrity within government?

    In 2009, President Obama pledged to create strong scientific integrity standards within government agencies that are charged with protecting our health, safety, and environment. While some progress has been made, there is a lot more that should be done to ensure that science fully informs policy making and scientists have the ability to speak freely about their research. As president, how will you continue to make progress and improve scientific integrity at the federal level?

    272 votes
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      100 comments  ·  Scientific Integrity  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • How would you ensure that independent science guides environmental and public health protections?

      Science-based regulations are vital to protecting the health and safety of Americans, especially black and Latino communities who face bigger environmental threats. How would you ensure that science continues to be the foundation of public health and environmental laws like the Clean Air Act, and that overburdened communities have a voice in how science is used in the policymaking process?

      254 votes
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        64 comments  ·  Public Health  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • How would you reduce our pollution from fossil fuel combustion and encourage more American jobs in energy efficiency?

        How would you reduce our pollution from fossil fuel combustion and encourage more American jobs in energy efficiency, employing solar, wind and geothermal electricity sources to better adapt to the many prolonged risks posed to vulnerable populations by abrupt climate change?

        242 votes
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          0 comments  ·  Renewable Energy  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • What policies will you put forth to ensure scientific literacy?

          There are areas in this nation where the scientific literacy rate is 15%. Every year scientist have to fight to keep non-scientific ideas, like intelligent design, out of textbooks and out of the classroom. Additionally, less than 2% of congress has any decent scientific training and it is so bad, most of congress does not even understand the difference between the term theory in colloquial English and theory in science demonstrated by the multiple occasions where they claim intelligent design is a competing theory, which is false, or that evolution is just a theory, which it is but in the…

          183 votes
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            8 comments  ·  Science Education  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • Would you support either a revenue-neutral carbon tax or a national cap-and-trade system to address climate change?

            There is an overwhelming consensus by 97% of climate scientists and every national science academy in the world that people are causing global warming and climate change by burning massive amounts of fossil fuels. How can we best transition to a clean energy economy that is based on energy efficiency and renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, and geothermal? For example, would you support either a revenue-neutral carbon tax or a national cap-and-trade system?

            182 votes
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              4 comments  ·  Climate Change  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • The impending climate catastrophe is THE most important issue facing humanity. How do you propose to address it?

              The impending climate catastrophe is THE most important issue facing humanity. How do you propose to address it?

              173 votes
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                1 comment  ·  Climate Change  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Will you support science-based tobacco product regulation, and so stop FDA ban of e-cigarettes, a low-risk alternative that reduces smoking?

                E-cigarettes are a proven method for helping smokers quit. But the War on Tobacco means that activists will try to ban anything the can. In the case of e-cigarettes, proposed FDA regulations are a de facto ban, that will inevitably create a huge black market. This is being pursued even though the science shows these products pose minimal risk and eliminating them will cause more smoking. Will you force FDA to act according to the science instead of supporting the special interest activist agenda to ban these products?

                170 votes
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                  12 comments  ·  Tobacco  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • How do we ensure adequate clean fresh water for the US in years to come?

                  Projections of availability of clean fresh water based on climate science are not optimistic for many parts of the world, including the western USA. Shortages of fresh water, required for life in the short term, are likely to fuel contention between nation states. While the USA is somewhat isolated from the worst of these effects, we will be inevitably become involved in regional struggles triggered by water shortages. How do we ensure adequate clean fresh water for the US in years to come?

                  166 votes
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                    1 comment  ·  Water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • How should we manage global population growth?

                    The greatest problem facing humankind is our excessive human population. How can we reduce this population so we can live sustainably?

                    139 votes
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                      3 comments  ·  Population  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Will you support substantial funding for high capacity energy storage and enhanced long distance electrical grids?

                      It is critical that the world switch as quickly as possible from fossil-fuel based electricity generation to a variety of renewable systems, principally wind and solar thermal and solar photovoltaics. However both sources of renewable energy are variable in time and space. Fortunately, wind and solar are getting less expensive as fossil-fuel-based electrical sources are costing more, but the transition from fossil fuels to renewables is not going fast enough.
                      Question: Will you support substantial funding to greatly improve electrical storage systems and an advanced, long distance electrical grid enabling transport over large distance to send available renewable energy to…

                      128 votes
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                        5 comments  ·  Renewable Energy  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • 122 votes
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                          2 comments  ·  Renewable Energy  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Will you bring back the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA)?

                          The United State has become a plutocracy, sealed by Citizens United. Instead of governing for corporations and the wealthy, why not govern based upon clean data and sound science? Bring back the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA). Require that for each law that is passed in contradiction to the scientific consensus as determined by the OTA, Congress must explain why the science is being ignored. Such a commitment really covers the entire list of the leading science topics to debate (energy, environment, evolution, climate change, etc). Will you bring back the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA)?

                          112 votes
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                            0 comments  ·  Scientific Integrity  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • How would you ensure that government policy is based on evidence and science rather than ideology or personal opinion?

                            In order to avoid the potential biases inherent in making judgements from all forms of personal beliefs and opinions, how would you strive to ensure that policy in all areas of government is based on evidence and science rather than being potentially biased when based on personal beliefs, ideologies etc?

                            103 votes
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                              1 comment  ·  Scientific Integrity  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Will you appoint a science advisor or science advisory committed to give you unbiased opinions and options for your administration to pursue

                              Will you appoint a science advisor or science advisory committee to give you unbiased opinions and options for your administration to pursue (or not to pursue)?

                              99 votes
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                                2 comments  ·  Infrastructure  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • Do you understand why evolution is true and do you support its teaching over faith-based emergence tales?

                                Do you understand why evolution is true and do you support its teaching over faith-based emergence tales? If you do not agree with the evidence, what don't you agree with specifically?

                                90 votes
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                                  4 comments  ·  Evolution & Origins  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Is gun violence a public health issue in your mind?

                                  For some Americans it is easier to buy a gun than healthy food. In terms of incidence, there have been more Americans killed by guns than 9-11 and the two wars combined. Yet the gun lobby has forbidden physicians from studying what happens that lead to intentional and accidental death by firearms. Keeping the primary care providers muted is putting American lives at risk. What would you do to stop this?

                                  89 votes
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                                    0 comments  ·  Medicine  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • How would you improve American science literacy in an age dominated by science?

                                    Our country, in many ways, is science illiterate. Presently, general education requirements at most universities are weighted heavily towards the social sciences, humanities, arts, and the like. At the high school level, students are only required to have 8th grade understanding of many subjects. Would you make general education requirements in science as important (equal credits) as humanities and arts at the college level?

                                    88 votes
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                                      4 comments  ·  Science Education  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • how will your Administration fund science? Are there areas of scientific research that you would not like funded?

                                      Various candidates have strong views about the role of science and its funding at the Federal level. How would each of these candidates view and fund science within their administration. What types of research would that not support.

                                      86 votes
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                                        0 comments  ·  Science Funding  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • Will you support a person's right to obtain genetic information about them that has been collected by government funded projects?

                                        Many federally funded projects collect genetic data about project participants yet do not return data about each individual to that individual. Given the interest in the Precision Medicine Initiative, this is an excellent moment to support a person's right to obtain the data collected about themselves. Will you support a person's right to obtain genetic information about them that has been collected by a government funded project?

                                        85 votes
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                                          9 comments  ·  Biotech  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • As president, how would you work to strengthen our country against the devastating consequences of climate change?

                                          Whether or not *you* believe climate change is naturally caused or the result of human activity, the expected consequences -- including higher sea level, more severe strong hurricanes, and changing weather patterns leading to floods, droughts, and changing crop belts -- have the potential to devastate our country economically and socially. As president, how would you work to strengthen our country against the devastating consequences of climate change?

                                          84 votes
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                                            0 comments  ·  Climate Change  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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