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Department of Energy

In covering DOE’s science-related activities, FYI focuses on the Office of Science, including its six program offices and 10 national laboratories. FYI also covers the Advanced Research Projects Agency—Energy and the science-related activities of the National Nuclear Security Administration, including its three national laboratories.

25 May 2017

President Trump’s fiscal year 2018 budget requests a 17 percent cut for the Department of Energy Office of Science. Within that, it boosts advanced computing, slashes biological and environmental research nearly in half, and cuts the four other primary research programs by just under 20 percent each.

18 May 2017

The final appropriations agreement for fiscal year 2017 increases funding for the Energy Department’s applied energy offices and the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy, a demonstration of congressional support for a set of programs the Trump administration has targeted for deep cuts.

12 May 2017

The final appropriations agreement for fiscal year 2017 increases the National Nuclear Security Administration’s budget by 3.3 percent, slightly more than the requested amount. Much of the boost goes toward addressing the agency’s backlog of infrastructure repair and recapitalization, an issue Congress has highlighted in recent hearings.

3 May 2017

The final appropriations agreement for fiscal year 2017 provides a 0.8 percent increase for the Department of Energy Office of Science. Five of the office’s six research programs are set to receive funding increases, while Fusion Energy Sciences will receive a 13 percent cut as further U.S. contributions to the ITER fusion facility are withheld.

26 Apr 2017

According to a new advisory panel review, the Department of Energy’s Laboratory-Directed Research and Development program is a rigorously overseen mechanism for fostering high-value strategic and exploratory R&D at its national labs and is an important tool for workforce recruitment and retention.

20 Apr 2017

This week, the Department of Defense launched a comprehensive review of U.S. nuclear weapons policy. The review comes at a time when members of Congress have become increasingly concerned about the state of the nation’s nuclear weapons enterprise and have begun to debate whether the weapons labs should conduct R&D on new types of nuclear weapons.

6 Apr 2017

Congress is currently advancing four bills that would support the commercialization of new nuclear reactor designs by enhancing R&D at the Department of Energy and instituting a new licensing framework at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

7 Mar 2017

Last week, the Senate confirmed Rick Perry as secretary of energy. Supporters point to his capabilities as a manager, while opponents doubt his commitment to protecting the Department of Energy and advancing its mission. Addressing department employees, Perry described his “journey” from having called for DOE’s elimination to being an advocate for its work.

1 Mar 2017

The meeting last week of the Department of Energy’s Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee was the last to be chaired by chemistry professor John Hemminger. While DOE awaits direction from the Trump administration, the committee reflected on its ongoing work to guide the activities of DOE’s Basic Energy Sciences program.

3 Feb 2017

The chairman’s plans include reforming the use of science in EPA rulemaking, prioritizing basic research at the Department of Energy, promoting STEM education, overseeing cybersecurity investigations, and adjusting NASA’s mission portfolio.

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