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Highlights from the President's FY15 Department of Energy Budget Request

March 05, 2014

Enacted FY14 funding is used for comparisons unless otherwise noted.

The administration’s FY15 budget request in discretionary funding for the Department of Energy (DOE) is $27.9 billion (1 percent decrease from FY14), of which $12.3 billion would support R&D (8.4 percent increase) and $4.2 billion would support investment in the Department’s applied energy sector programs to drive an “all-of-the-above” approach to energy sector innovation. The proposed budget would provide substantial increases for funding advanced manufacturing and clean energy R&D.

DOE Office of Science (SC), the largest federal sponsor of basic research in the physical sciences, would receive $5.1 billion (0.9 percent increase) to support basic research in fundamental science that drives energy innovation. The proposed budget would reduce funding for Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists ($19.5 million, 26.4 percent decrease) and Science Laboratories Infrastructure ($79.2 million, 19 percent decrease). However, funding for all of SC research programs except High Energy Physics and Fusion Energy Sciences would increase. SC Research programs include:

  • Basic Energy Sciences­­­ — $1.8 billion (5.5 percent increase) to promote basic science research related to energy technology development;
  • Biological and Environmental Research — $628 million (3 percent increase) to advance understanding of the role of atmospheric, terrestrial, ocean, and subsurface interactions in predicting climate change and plan for future energy and resource needs;
  • Nuclear Physics — $593.6 million (4.3 percent increase) to support nuclear matter research;
  • High Energy Physics — $744 million (6.6 percent decrease) to promote fundamental research of the universe;
  • Advanced Scientific Computing Research — $541 million (13.2 percent increase) to support the advanced computational research, applied mathematics, computer science, and the development and operation of high performance computing facilities; and,
  • Fusion Energy Sciences — $416 million (17.6 percent decrease) to promote the research and development of nuclear fusion technology.

The proposed SC budget would also continue funding for Energy Frontier Research Centers, the Fuels from Sunlight Innovation Hub and the Batteries and Energy Storage Energy Innovation Hub(s), new investment in computational materials sciences to develop community codes for the design of functional materials and the construction of a Rare Isotope Beam facility at Michigan State University.

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) would receive $2.3 billion (21.9 percent increase) to support its operational focus on research, development, demonstration, and deployment (RDD&D) of cost effective, clean energy manufacturing technologies. EERE’s Advanced Manufacturing program would receive a major boost in funding, with $305.1 million (69.1 percent increase) to support the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative deployment of at least one more Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute. The proposed budget also supports advanced manufacturing and materials R&D aimed at supporting U.S. manufacturing gains in energy productivity, environmental performance, and economic competitiveness.

Funding for EERE research programs includes:

EERE Research Programs

FY15 Request
($ millions)
Percent Change from
FY14 enacted

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

Vehicle Technologies 359 23.9
Bioenergy Technologies 253.2 9
Solar Energy Technologies 282.3 9.8
Wind Power Technologies 115 30.5
Water Power Technologies 62.5 6.7
Geothermal Technologies 61.5 34.4
Energy Efficiency  


Advanced Manufacturing 305.1 69.1
Building Technologies 211.7 19
Weatherization and
Intergovernmental Programs
304.7 25.9

The president’s budget request would allocate $325 million (16.1 percent increase) for the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E), which supports high-impact energy research with real-world applications. Proposed funding would support a $150 million open-funding opportunity to support transformational energy systems research and provide seed funding for proof-of-concept ideas that could support the development of future programs.

Fossil Energy Research and Development (FER&D) would receive $475.5 million (15.4 percent decrease) to support conventional energy R&D programs focused on carbon capture research. Funding highlights include:

  • $35 million (69.9 percent increase) in R&D funding for natural gas technologies;
  • $25 million to establish a new demonstration program, Natural Gas Carbon Capture and Storage, to support projects that capture and store carbon emissions from natural gas power systems; and,
  • $33.5 million (15.8 percent decrease) to support cross-cutting research in the design, construction, and operation of energy systems.

The president’s budget request would also eliminate the Unconventional Fossil Energy Technologies program.

As part of the president’s Climate Action Plan, the Innovative Technology Loan Guarantee Program (LGP) would receive a net appropriation of $7 million (65 percent decrease) to offset the program’s administrative costs. The program’s remaining $8 billion in loan guarantee authority would be used to support renewable energy and greenhouse gas reduction projects. The Advanced Technologies Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) Loan Program, which supports the domestic production of advanced technology vehicles, would receive $4 million (33.3 percent decrease) to cover administrative and operational expenses of the program.

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