FY 2001 Dept. of Energy Appropriations Bill Set for House Floor Action If all goes as scheduled, the House of Representatives will consider the FY 2001 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill this week. This legislation, H.R. 4733, provides funding for the Department of Energy's Office of Science.
H.R. 4733 provides more funding than was requested for fusion energy sciences and the total requested funding for the High Energy Physics and Nuclear Physics programs. The Basic Energy Sciences program took a major hit, primarily in the reduction from the requested level of funding for the Spallation Neutron Source.
Selections from the conference report, H.Rpt. 106-693, are below. The entire conference report can be viewed at the following Library of Congress site: http://thomas.loc.gov/ The Senate Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee is due to complete work on its version of H.R. 4733 in mid-July.
"Due to severe funding constraints, the Committee was unable to provide the significant budget increases requested by the Department in fiscal year 2001. It has been necessary to defer many on-going programs and new initiatives which the Committee views very favorably and regrets being unable to fund."
HIGH ENERGY PHYSICS
"The Committee's recommendation for high energy physics is $714,730,000, the same as the budget request, and an increase of $6,840,000 over fiscal year 2000.
"Research and technology- The Committee recommendation for research and technology is $224,820,000, a reduction of $12,900,000 from the budget request of $237,720,000. For fiscal year 2001 the Department requested $19,200,000 for research and development on the Next Linear Collider and $8,700,000 for research and development on the Muon-Muon Collider. Due to severe funding constraints, the recommendation limits funding for these two activities to a total of $15,000,000. With the funding constraints on operating existing facilities and the need to fund major science projects currently under construction, the Committee is not anxious at this time to fund designs for expensive new facilities.
"Facility operations- The Committee recommendation for facility operations is $489,910,000, an increase of $12,900,000 over the budget request of $477,010,000. The Department requested $207,031,000 in fiscal year 2001 for facility operations at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batvia, Illinois. This level of funding would severely impact on-going operations at Fermi, so the Committee has provided $230,931,000, an additional $23,900,000, for Fermi operations in fiscal year 2001.
"The Committee recommendation for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is $59,000,000, a reduction of $11,000,000 from the budget request of $70,000,000. Funding is available since obligations for the LHC have been slower than anticipated, and there will be no negative impact on the project."
"The Committee recommendation for nuclear physics is $369,890,000, the same as the budget request, and an increase of $17,890,000 over fiscal year 2000."
BASIC ENERGY SCIENCES
"The Committee recommendation for basic energy sciences is $791,000,000, a reduction of $224,770,000 from the budget request, and an increase of $7,873,000 over fiscal year 2000. Due to severe funding constraints, the Committee was unable to provide the requested level of funding for this program. It has been necessary to defer funding for many new initiatives which the Committee views very favorably.
"For purposes of reprogramming during fiscal year 2001, the Department may reallocate funding among all operating accounts in basic energy sciences. The recommendation includes $6,815,000, the same as last year, for the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) program, and provides an increase of $7,873,000 to fund new waste management activities transferred to the program in fiscal year 2001.
"Spallation Neutron Source- The Committee recommendation provides $100,000,000, a reduction of $161,900,000 from the budget request of $261,900,000, and the same level as fiscal year 2000 for construction of the Spallation Neutron Source. The Committee is aware that the Department has made significant progress in improving the management of the project in the past year. The funding reduction does not reflect concern with the current status of the project, but rather the severe funding constraints under which the Committee is operating in fiscal year 2001."
ADVANCED SCIENTIFIC COMPUTING RESEARCH
"The goal of the Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) program is to discover, develop, and deploy the computational and networking tools that enable researchers in the scientific disciplines to analyze, model, simulate, and predict complex phenomena.
"The Committee recommendation is $137,000,000, a reduction of $44,970,000 from the budget request, but an increase of $5,000,000 over fiscal year 2000. The Committee is aware that the Department has worked hard to develop an advanced computing program to meet the needs of the science programs and laboratories. However, severe funding constraints make it impossible to fund a large new computing program in fiscal year 2001. The recommendation includes $5,000,000 for computer equipment upgrades at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory."
FUSION ENERGY SCIENCES
"The Committee recommendation for fusion energy sciences is $255,000,000, an increase of $7,730,000 over the budget request, and the same as fiscal year 2000. Additional funding of $25,000,000 has been provided in the inertial confinement fusion program in the Weapons Activities appropriation account to support work on the development of high average power lasers [see FYI #74].
"Funds for this program should be allocated in accordance with the Fusion Energy Science Advisory Committee's (FESAC) report on Balance and Priorities. The Committee is pleased that the FESAC review process seems to be positioning the U.S. program to take advantage of the much larger international fusion research effort with the resources available and also positions the program to accelerate the development of fusion energy.
"The Committee recommendation includes the budget request of $19,600,000 for decontamination and decommissioning of the Tokomak Fusion Test Reactor (TFTR)."
Richard M. Jones