As a part of his 2017 budget proposal, the President is asking for an increase in funding for clean energy research and development (R&D).
This proposal represents the United State’s part of an agreement that was reached at the recent Conference of The Parties in Paris. The U.S. and 19 other countries have pledged to double their clean energy R&D over the next 5 years.
It is vital that these new budget proposals for clean energy R&D get approved. We need more good news, especially in light of the recent temporary halting of the Clean Power Plan. The key word there is temporary, as that plan is vital in transitioning our nation to one that is eventually based on clean power.
Here are the numbers involved for Mission Innovation; the 2016 budget was $6.4 billion, 2017 – $7.7 billion, and $12.8 billion by 2021. Part of this budget – $1.85 billion over 5 years – will go towards funding an innovation incubator – ARPA-E (Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy).
Energy Secretary, Ernest Moniz had this to say – “The President’s budget request would accelerate American energy innovation, increasing our energy and national security, and expand our commitment to science and research. It also reflects the DOE’s continuing commitment to maintain our nuclear deterrent, secure vulnerable nuclear material, and clean up our Cold War legacy.”
In addition to the general R&D effort, there is also proposal that calls for creating about 10 centers to work with labs, universities, industries, and investors to develop clean energy breakthroughs.
Other highlights of the budget proposal include investments in physical sciences, clean transportation, nuclear energy, carbon capture, energy efficiency, grid modernization, and transition of technologies to the market.
All of these investments is further proof that the current presidential administration is serious about creating a more sustainable energy future for America. Significant investments in R&D is essential to make sure that we make the most out of clean tech and clean energy opportunities.
It is imperative that the administration that takes control of the White House next year continues to support the advancement of clean energy sources like wind and solar power.
There’s reason for optimism because clean energy boasts multiple benefits on the national scale; it creates energy independence from other nations, creates jobs, reduces greenhouse gases, protects the environment, and is cost effective.
The Clean Power Plan and more spending for the research and development of clean energy will continue.
It’s the only way we can move forward.