Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Trump Wants Huge Cut to Clean Energy Research

An Alberta surface rights advocate says the province should apply licensing rules for land agents working for renewable energy companies like wind power operators just as it does for oil and gas landmen T-Mobile on Monday announced its second wind power contract and vowed to use renewable power to account for 100
| 02 February, 2018, 00:44

Should Congress decide to pass a long-term budget based on the president's recommendations, The Washington Post is reporting that the administration's draconian cuts would include slashing the Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) from $2.04 billion level to $575.5 million and cutting almost 250 jobs from the office.

Based on the draft budget documents, the cuts would cut down on staff from 680 in 2017 to 450 in 2019.

"It's no wonder, with Groundhog Day around the corner, that the Trump administration is floating another absurd budget proposal on energy", comments Elizabeth Noll, energy expert at NRDC.

Electric vehicle research would take an especially big hit, the Post reports, cut to $56 million from the current $307 million level. While it's important to note that this is just a jumping-off point, and negotiations will likely ultimately raise funding and jobs from the proposal, it is a stark reminder that Trump's White House is all about partisan politics and not what's best for the planet (or even the economy). Its SunShot Program has significantly reduced the total costs of solar energy.

The White House said it wouldn't comment "on any leaked or pre-decisional documents prior to the release of the official budget". Congress rejected Trump's last budget proposal that slashed funding to the EERE, although the cuts proposed this time around are more dramatic.


The large bulk of its funding is deployed on research, most frequently at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Co. The newspaper's sources, who the Post said asked for anonymity, told the paper the Office of Management and Budget "insisted on deeper cuts".

"The president suggests a budget, but, under the Constitution, Congress passes appropriations bills", Republican Sen. The report said the administration also wants to abolish the weatherization program, eliminate state energy grants, and trim research in fuel efficient vehicles by 82 percent.

Trump's energy department previous year proposed providing federal subsidies to nuclear and coal power plants, arguing the move was necessary to make the national grid more resilient to crises.

The renewable and efficiency programs represent about 7 percent of the Energy Department's overall budget.

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