When Congress returns to work next week it will immediately confront legislation left over from last year. Seven major appropriations bills remain stuck in the Senate that would provide FY 2004 funding for science-related programs such as the National Science Foundation, NASA, National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Department of Education's Math-Science Partnership Program. The energy policy bill, which contains strong authorization numbers for the DOE Office of Science, is bogged down.

14 Jan 2004

President George Bush today signed H.R. 6, The Energy Policy Act of 2005. Among the provisions of this 1,725 page bill are provisions providing spending caps for the Department of Energy's Office of Science for Fiscal Years 2007, 2008 and 2009. The conference report, 109-190, elevates the position of the director of the Office of Science, and contains language regarding several physics programs (fusion, Spallation Neutron Source, and Rare Isotope Accelerator) within the Office of Science.

8 Aug 2005

One day before the inauguration of President Bush, Samuel Bodman was on Capitol Hill for his confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Bodman, currently Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, has been nominated by President Bush to become the new secretary of the Department of Energy (see

21 Jan 2005

Energy Under Secretary for Science Ray Orbach touched on many subjects during his briefing last week to the Fusion Energy Sciences Advisory Committee. While most related to ITER and other fusion-related topics, he was emphatic on a central point pertaining to all projects under his watch: "The Office of Science will not have cost overruns."

23 Jul 2007

At 5:00 p.m. yesterday President-Elect Barack Obama announced that he will nominate Steven Chu, currently director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, to be the next Secretary of Energy. In making this announcement, Obama said:

16 Dec 2008

“It has been an 'interesting' year for DOE HEP program" stated one of the exhibits that Dennis Kovar, Associate Director of Science for High Energy Physics showed to the High Energy Physics Advisory Panel at its November 13 meeting. Kovar presented a broad overview of DOE’s High Energy Physics Program, with many of his remarks focusing on the funding outlook.   Joseph Dehmer, Director of the National Science Foundation's Division of Physics, also addressed the advisory panel, updating them on several NSF projects.

20 Nov 2008

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) outlined his legislative intentions in a speech to the Senate before it recessed for the November election. The chairman described his committee's future agenda in areas such as new energy technologies, energy infrastructure, energy efficiency, and funding. Bingaman also described plans to solicit expert opinion in coming months on matters before the committee.

11 Nov 2008

The importance of basic research to advances in new energy technologies and other innovations was highlighted during a hearing of the House Energy and Environment Subcommittee earlier this fall.  The news from this hearing was positive, but in some cases, guarded.  All agreed that the DOE Office of Science's Basic Energy Sciences (BES) program has strong and enthusiastic supporters in the academic and industrial sectors, and that the BES program has the world's best scientific user facilities.  But funding for research programs  and facilities falls short of what is needed, and the failure

5 Nov 2008

A press briefing last week in Washington stressed the important role that basic research will play in meeting the nation's future energy needs. The briefing was sponsored by The Science Coalition and the Task Force on the Future of American Innovation, and featured four academic, business, and research speakers.

A petition was also released at this briefing by the Energy Sciences Coalition calling on the next president to support higher funding basic energy research.

26 Sep 2008

The American Institute of Physics and the American Physical Society were two of the more than seventy scientific organizations, businesses, and higher education organizations who signed a petition that is being delivered to both Presidential campaigns. "We call on the next President to work with Congress to develop, fund and implement a comprehensive, multi-agency, basic research strategy to address our nation’s energy crisis and future energy security," the petition states.

24 Sep 2008


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