Obama wants $12.8bn for clean energy research

Obama wants $12.8bn for clean energy research


President Barack Obama wants to double United States investment in clean-energy research and development, to US$12.8 billion by 2021, as part of a broader commitment to curb the effects of climate change.

The administration is seeking US$7.7 billion in discretionary funding in fiscal 2017 to boost funding for the research at 12 federal agencies, according to a White House fact sheet.

US-Coal-plant-emissionsBloomberg newsagency reports the funding would increase by 15 per cent a year through to the 2021 financial year.

Republican leaders in Congress have already said they do not plan to help enact President Obama’s budget plan.

Bloomberg reports President Obama is using his final budget request, to be unveiled tomorrow, to showcase his efforts to curb greenhouse-gas emissions.

Irish-Wind-Farm-greenSpeaking in his weekly address, Obama said the new budget promised to boost private sector job creation, lower the cost of clean energy, and help renewable power outcompete fossil fuels “in every state”.

“As I said in my State of the Union address, rather than subsidise the past, we should invest in the future,” said President Obama.

“That’s why the budget I will send to Congress this Tuesday will double funding for clean energy research and development by 2020.”

UN-SecGen-Ban-Ki-moon-US-Obama-Paris-climateThe push has been widely criticised by politicians in coal- and oil-rich states.

The investment in clean-energy research stems from a commitment reached with other nations at United Nations sponsored climate talks in Paris in December.

About 80 per cent of the funding would support Department of Energy efforts including development of clean-vehicle technologies, energy storage and nuclear reactor research.

US-traffic-smogOther agencies that would receive funding include the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Department of Agriculture.

The White House last week said it will propose a US$10 a barrel tax on oil as a way to pay for improvements to the US transportation network.

Republicans who control Congress widely rejected the idea.