NASA awarded Planet a $6.7 million contract to provide Earth imagery for climate research.
Last month's budget proposal included terminating four planned or operational missions designed at least in part to collect climate-related data.
The former NASA administrator said the Trump administration "seems to be curtailing the availability of valuable data to decision makers."
Wilbur Ross wrote that he will "continue to research, monitor, and report climate information to the public."
At a time when NASA earth scientists are concerned their research may be scuttled by the incoming Trump administration, the space agency’s top science official is preaching pragmatism and unity.
The Merlin satellite, six years behind schedule and expected to cost 250 million euros, is slated to launch in 2020 on a European rocket.