Thursday, February 26, 2009

FY10 Budget Focus On Energy, Climate, & Environment

Feb 26: In the President's FY10 Budget remarks he had the following to say about energy and climate change, "Because our future depends on our ability to break free from oil that's controlled by foreign dictators, we need to make clean, renewable energy the profitable kind of energy. That's why we'll be working with Congress on legislation that places a market-based cap on carbon pollution and drives the production of more renewable energy. And to support this effort, we'll invest $15 billion a year for 10 years to develop technologies like wind power and solar power, and to build more efficient cars and trucks right here in America. It's an investment that will put people back to work, make our nation more secure, and help us meet our obligation as good stewards of the Earth we all inhabit." More funding is included within EPA's budget for activities on a related GHG emission inventory (see below).

The President's formal budget message included within the budget document states, "The time has come to usher in a new era -- a new era of responsibility in which we act not only to save and create new jobs, but also to lay a new foundation of growth upon which we can renew the promise of America. This Budget is a first step in that journey. It lays out for the American people the extent of the crisis we inherited, the steps we will take to jumpstart our economy to create new jobs, and our plans to transform our economy for the 21st Century to give our children and grandchildren the fruits of many years of economic growth. . .

"To finally spark the creation of a clean energy economy, we will make the investments in the next three years to double our Nation’s renewable energy capacity. We will modernize Federal buildings and improve the energy efficiency of millions of American homes, saving consumers and taxpayers billions on our energy bills. In the process, we will put Americans to work in new
jobs that pay well -- jobs installing solar panels and wind turbines; constructing energy efficient buildings; manufacturing fuel efficient vehicles; and developing the new energy technologies that will lead to even more jobs and more savings, putting us on the path toward energy independence for our Nation and a cleaner, safer planet in the process."

In a comment on the FY10 Budget for the Department of Energy (DOE), the President says, "The pursuit of a new energy economy requires a sustained, all-hands-on-deck effort because the foundation of our energy independence is right here, in America -- in the power of wind and solar; in new crops and new technologies; in the innovation of our scientists and entrepreneurs, and the dedication and skill of our workforce. As we face this challenge, we can seize boundless opportunities for our people. We can create millions of jobs. We can spark the dynamism of our economy through long term investments in renewable energy that will give life to new businesses and industries, with good jobs that pay well and can’t be outsourced. We will make public buildings more efficient, modernize our electric grid, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and protect and preserve our natural resources."

The FY10 DOE Budget provides $26.3 billion (down from $33.9 billion) for the Department of Energy. In accordance with the President’s priorities, the Budget supports the Office of Electricity Delivery Discretionary and Energy Reliability in modernizing the electricity grid, and increases support for the Office of Science as a step towards doubling Federal investment in the basic sciences. Several Budget initiatives promote a clean energy agenda, including support for loan guarantees to help deploy innovative, clean technologies; advancement of Carbon Capture Storage (CSS) technology; and other efforts to develop and deploy an array of energy alternatives. Addressing both environmental and safety concerns, the Budget increases efforts to secure, manage, and dispose of nuclear material and invests in technology to detect and deter nuclear smuggling and the development of weapons of mass destruction programs. Additionally, the Recovery Act includes $39 billion in support for energy programs.

Budget information for DOE indicates, "The Yucca Mountain program will be scaled back to those costs necessary to answer inquiries from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, while the Administration devises a new strategy toward nuclear waste disposal." On the subject of coal, the information states that the budget, "Advances the development of low-carbon coal technologies. Supports CCS technology and along with the $3.4 billion provided in the Recovery Act for low-carbon emission power demonstrations, these funds will help allow the use of our extensive domestic coal resource while reducing the impacts on climate change."

On the FY10 Budget for U.S. EPA, the President says, "…the call to save our planet has never been more urgent. In recent years, we’ve seen the harm that more severe weather events can do. We’ve seen it in the droughts that have swept the South, the hurricanes that threaten our shores with increasing ferocity, and the rising sea levels that could one day submerge our cities. This is a challenge unlike any the world has ever faced, and America must lead the world to meet it."

According to a fact sheet, with $10.5 billion in funding for the EPA, the President’s Fiscal Year 2010 Budget is 34 percent higher than 2009 likely enacted funding (up $2.7 billion). To preserve water resources, the President’s Budget accelerates the restoration of the Great Lakes, and includes an historic increase in funding for clean water through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund. Additional measures to secure our water supply include fully funding the Water Security Initiative (WSI) pilot cooperative agreements and the activities of the Water Alliance for Threat Reduction. This Budget will yield more than $1 billion to clean up the most contaminated sites in the Superfund program.

The EPA budget accelerates the restoration of the Great Lakes and supports $475 million for a new inter-agency initiative to address regional issues that affect the Great Lakes, such as invasive species, non-point source pollution, and contaminated sediment. The budget also lays the groundwork for economy-wide greenhouse gas reduction. The Budget funds a $19 million increase for work and related activities on a GHG emission inventory and for work with affected industry sectors to report high-quality GHG emission data. The data will aid in developing a comprehensive climate change plan to invest in clean energy, and instituting a broad national effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions about 14 percent below 2005 levels by 2020, and about 83 percent below 2005 levels by 2050.

Access the President's remarks on presenting the FY10 Budget (
click here). Access the Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year 2010 (click here). Access more information on the DOE budget (click here). Access more details on the EPA budget (click here). Access the Budget Fact Sheets, for various agencies and departments for Fiscal Year 2010 (click here). Access commentary on the budget from OMB Director Peter Orszag (click here). [*All]