Copyright 2000 Federal News Service, Inc.
Federal News Service
March 2, 2000, Thursday
SECTION: PREPARED TESTIMONY
LENGTH: 3765 words
PREPARED STATEMENT OF THE HONORABLE BILL RICHARDSON SECRETARY U.S. DEPARTMENT OF
BEFORE THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON ENERGY AND
Mr. Chairman and
members of the Committee, thank you for this opportunity to testify on the
Department's budget request for FY 2001.
In the past year, a top
priority of mine has been to improve the way DOE manages its people, its
resources, and its programs. My senior managers and I have given management
inefficiencies our closest attention and, I'm proud to report, we have achieved
some excellent results--and we expect more. We listened to Congress, we studied
DOE's business operations, we designed needed management reforms and we put them
First, we changed the way headquarters and the field
interrelate. We instituted a Field Management Council to bring coherence and
weigh competing demands for requirements on the field, and assigned Lead
Principal Secretarial Officers (LPSOs) responsibility for specific sites within
the complex. We hired new managers at almost all our sites throughout the
complex. Second, we increased the accountability of our top managers. We are
depending more upon "line management," have empowered our program office
assistant secretaries, and are holding them accountable for their specific areas
Third, working with the Congress, we regained control
of assigning M&O contract employees to the Washington area. We restructured
assignment procedures for these employees in Washington, required specifically
defined tasks from them, and ordered closure of most M&O Washington offices
reimbursed by DOE.
Fourth, working with the Congress, we are applying
sound business principles to management of our construction and environmental
remediation projects. We established and staffed the Office of Engineering and
Construction Management to make major fundamental changes in our project
management procedures, principles, and practices.Fifth, we initiated several
immediate actions to correct security and counterintelligence problems within
the Department that had existed for years, but had not received the appropriate
level of attention. We have made substantial progress on an extensive program of
security and counterintelligence improvements, including:
the Office of Security and Emergency Operations, consolidating the security
functions throughout the Department; -- instituting a bottom-up internal
security review; and, -- creating the Office of Independent Oversight and
Performance Assurance, which independently oversees security, cyber security,
and emergency management within the Department and reports directly to me.
And sixth, we have continued and expanded on our workforce initiatives.
In 1995, the Department began a comprehensive effort to downsize its operations.
The goal was to accomplish a 25 percent reduction in federal staffing by the end
of FY 2001. The Department met that goal in January 1999 -- almost two years
ahead of schedule -- and is still below that level. Contractor employment has
also come down significantly and as of the end of 1999, it is 31 percent lower
than in 1992.
Last year I launched the "Workforce for the 21st Century"
Initiative to build a talented and diverse workforce to strengthen our technical
and management capabilities and address new challenges. Workforce 21 addresses
workforce readiness issues exacerbated by the downsizing of the federal
government: significant skills gaps within the scientific and technical areas,
and a workforce nearing retirement eligibility. Only 11 percent of the
Department's workforce is under the age of 35 and only 8 percent of the
technical workforce is under 35. For the first time in four years, under
Workforce 21, the Department has been able to target hiring of key technical
personnel and strengthen recruitment and internship programs to create a
pipeline of employees ready to enter the DOE workforce at the entry and
Increasingly, we are competing with private industry to
recruit and retain the highly skilled personnel required to deliver our
missions. The growing skills gap has been recognized by the General Accounting
Office, the Office of Inspector General, and the Defense Authorizing Committees.
To address part of the scientific skills gap, I am proposing a Scientific
Recruitment and Retention Initiative in this budget which totals
We also have an opportunity and
responsibility to address the longstanding underrepresentation of women and
minorities in senior management and technical positions. I have initiated an
extensive review of workforce management practices to identify barriers that
hinder the promotion of a more representative workforce. The review resulted in
a Department-wide strategic plan called "Achieving and Promoting a Workforce
that Looks Like America: A Companion to Workforce 21." This plan establishes
accountability and tracking systems, now in place, to build a representative
workforce and instill workforcemanagement systems that foster equal opportunity
in hiring, promotion, and training practices. I have also established a task
force against racial profiling and emphasized the need to promote more
partnerships with minority educational institutions.
We will continue to
improve the Department's internal management capabilities to realize the full
potential which our workforce and facilities hold for America. We've made
progress in many areas, but we're far from finished. This budget will help us to
go farther. It is a forward-looking request emphasizing investments for the
During this management process, the
Department has continued successfully to carry out its critical missions. For
example, in science, Department-funded researchers received 43 of the 100 awards
given in 1999 by R&D Magazine for outstanding technology developments with
commercial potential. This is the largest number ever won by any public or
private entity in the history of the awards.
In national security, the
Departments of Energy and Defense certified for the third consecutive year that
the safety, security and reliability of our nation's nuclear weapons stockpile
could be assured without nuclear testing. And we are well on our way to our
fourth certification. We also completed important agreements with Russia to
In energy resources, we proposed legislation
to restructure the electricity industry, to give consumers choices, and save
them $20 billion a year on their power bills. We hope Congress
will act on it this year. We promoted new technologies for clean and renewable
energy. We worked with utilities and the oil and gas industry to make systems
Y2K compliant, and on January 1st, the lights stayed on.
environment, after years of delays and excuses, we opened the Waste Isolation
Pilot Plant in New Mexico, the nation's first nuclear waste repository. We
formed partnerships with governors to clean up and close former nuclear weapons
production sites, and set aside over three hundred thousand acres as wildlife
preserves in Washington, Colorado, Tennessee, South Carolina, Idaho, and New
Strength Through Science
We've given this budget
the theme Strength Through Science. Science is the focus because scientific
research, both basic and applied, is integral to achieving our programmatic
objectives in each of our mission areas. This is as true for our national
security mission-which ensures that the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile
remains safe, secure, and reliable, and counters the spread of weapons of mass
destruction--as it is for our energy mission--to achieve continued reductions in
the economic and environmental costs of producing andusing energy resources. It
is also true for our environmental mission to clean up the nuclear and toxic
waste that is the legacy of the Cold War.
Many of the technologies that
are fueling today's economy, such as the Internet, build upon government
investments in the 1960's and 1970's- including the Office of Science's "Esnet."
The Department of Energy and its predecessor agencies have been the sponsor of
sciencedriven growth through the combined efforts of the national laboratories,
70 Nobel Laureates associated with the Department, and thousands of outstanding
university- and industry-based researchers nationwide.
is among the top federal research and development funding agencies, regardless
of the criterion used. We are first in scientific facilities and rank third in
basic research after the National Institutes of Health and the National Science
Foundation. The Department of Energy is, at its heart, a science agency; in
fact, 40 percent of our FY 2001 budget qualifies as R&D expenditures. We
will spend a total of $7 billion on R&D in FY 2000 and plan
to spend $7.65 billion in FY 2001, an increase of 8 percent.
Department of Energy FY 2001 Budget Request
The Department of
Energy's FY 2001 budget request is $18.9 billion. This is
$1.6 billion over this year's appropriation, a nine percent
increase. Our budget is organized into four business lines; some highlights of
each of these are described briefly below.
$2.2 billion (an increase of $176 million, or
8 percent) to provide energy options for a stronger America. These investments
will enhance U.S. energy security by providing more economical and
environmentally desirable ways to use and produce energy. DOE continues to
support a balanced portfolio of energy for America's future, and research and
development (R&D) to enable a cleaner energy future. This request emphasizes
energy infrastructure reliability, scientific carbon management and R&D,
international energy R&D partnerships, and bio-energy/bio-power
The request features several cross-cutting initiatives
involving the energy technology research offices (Fossil, Nuclear, Energy
Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Science) that will ensure energy security
through new economically and environmentally desirable means of using and
producing energy. The Climate Change Technology Initiative and the International
Clean Energy Initiative will identify and develop pre- commercial energy
technologies and potential markets for their use. The latter effort builds on
the conclusions of a recent report by the President's Committee of Advisors on
Science and Technology (PCAST) that identifies the need to bridge the gap
between development and deployment of new technologies.
Grid Reliability Initiative will develop policies and technologies to enhance
the security of our electricity supplies. The Carbon Sequestration Initiative
follows a technology roadmap to accelerate R&D to mitigate the impacts of
carbon emissions.The Enhanced Ultra Clean Transportation Fuels Initiative
targets government and industry resources to develop a portfolio of advanced
petroleum-based highway transportation fuels and fuels utilization technologies
that are responsive to near-and mid-term environmental, regulatory and technical
Finally, the Bioenergy/Bioproducts Initiative will fund
research to help make biomass a viable competitor as an energy source or
The Fossil Energy Research and Development program
level of $385 million includes funding for the up-graded
National Energy Technology Laboratory for fossil fuels research. This budget
continues investments in advanced technological concepts and development of
highly efficient power generation and fuel producing technologies that together
could reduce, or perhaps nearly eliminate, carbon emissions from fossil fuel
facilities. The centerpieces of this research include the Vision 21 energy plant
of the future and carbon sequestration.
The proposed deferral of
$221 million in the Clean Coal Technology program reflects
schedule delays from the rescheduling of project activities and not a reduction
in the level of support for this important program.
Funding for the
Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy includes support for research
to assist in the development of more efficient homes and buildings, wind energy,
geothermal, photovoltaics, and bioenergy and biopower projects. Research will
continue in the on- going Partnership for a New Generation of Vehicles (PNGV),
which is developing the prototype advanced technology vehicle in conjunction
with the automotive industry.
The Weatherization Assistance Program,
which reduces heating and cooling bills for lowincome residents, has an
increased budget request for FY 2001 to weatherize approximately 77,000 homes.
In addition, the Administration is requesting $19 million for
this program in the FY 2000 Supplemental Appropriations package to cover 9500
This Office also funds the Federal Energy Management
Program, which helps federal agencies identify, finance and implement energy
efficiency improvements for their facilities. The Federal Government spends
$8 billion each year on energy for its own facilities and
operations, and this program saves money for taxpayers by reducing that
The budget for the Office of Nuclear Energy, Science and
Technology_ has an increase of $21 million to support such
important activities as nuclear energy research and development (including the
expanded Nuclear Energy Research Initiative) and managing the inventory of
depleted uranium hexafluoride. The Department is also proceeding with the
project to design and build facilities to convert this inventory to a more
stable form, and in a manner that fully protects workers and the
environment.This office also conducts a program to produce and distribute
isotopes necessary for medical, industrial and research purposes, including the
Advanced Nuclear Medicine Initiative.
The Power Marketing
Administrations (PMAs) sell electricity primarily generated by hydropower
projects located at federal dams. First preference for the sale of power is
given to public bodies and cooperatives. Revenues from selling the power and
transmission services of the three PMAs are used to repay the U.S. Treasury for
annual operation and maintenance costs, repay the capital investments with
interest, and assist capital repayment of other features of certain projects.
However the PMAs also buy and sell, as a simple pass through, purchase power and
wheeling. This budget assumes that in FY 2001 the PMAs will use offsetting
collections from the sale of electricity to finance purchase power and wheeling
expenses previously funded by direct appropriations. Purchase power and wheeling
activities financed through this method will be phased out in annual decrements
by the end of FY 2004.
Science: $3.2 billion (an
increase of $33 7 million, or 12 percent) to strengthen our
science programs and provide the knowledge base for future innovation, thereby
improving America's long-term position in an increasingly competitive world
economy. We continue to promote a strong national scientific infrastructure and
provide the technical foundations for our applied missions The FY 2001 budget
includes initiatives to advance ongoing work at the frontiers of nanoscience,
scientific computing, microbial genomics, robotics, bioengineering, and it will
allow us to increase the use of our scientific facilities.
calls for $182 million for Advanced Scientific Computing
Research (ASCR) to increase computer modeling and simulation research and
Microbial genomics, an outgrowth of the Department's
pioneering work in the Human Genome Program, is expanding efforts in microbial
cell research. This research, which involves the study of organisms that have
survived and thrived in an extreme and inhospitable environment, could hold the
key to advance energy production and use, environmental cleanup, medicine, and
agricultural and industrial processing.
Nanotechnology, or research and
development into extreme miniaturized technologies, is funded at
This work gives researchers the
ability to manipulate matter at the atomic level and could spark further
development of supercomputers that fit in the palm of the hand, or tiny devices
to fight disease or heal injuries from inside our bodies.
in this year's science budget is $281 million for the
Spallation Neutron Source and $247 million for fusion.
Environmental Quality: $6.8 billion (an increase of
$511 million, or 8 percent) to improve the quality of life for
millions of Americans. Within this business line, the Environmental Management
budget of $6.3 billion supports proposals to continue our
efforts to meet cleanup obligations to communities throughout the country. This
amount is required to ensure that each cleanup site meets safety and legal
requirements, supports accelerated cleanup and site closure, and maintains
others critical environmental priorities. It will allow the Department to
continue to implement the agreement I reached last year with the Governors of
Colorado, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington on a Statement of Principles
laying the foundation for a cooperative working relationship between DOE and the
states with DOE cleanup sites.
The request features new initiatives to
accelerate cleanup and protect health and safety at Gaseous Diffusion Plants
(GDPs) in Portsmouth, Ohio, and Paducah, Kentucky. Last summer, after reports of
alleged health and environmental problems surfaced at Paducah, I announced a
strategy tO investigate, identify and remedy any past or remaining health,
safety and environmental problems at these plants. I appointed an investigation
team that made recommendations which resulted in a request for funding to
achieve health surveillance, safety assessments, and environmental remediation
goals within a rapid timeframe. The Administration also has submitted a
$26 million FY 2000 Supplemental Budget Request to Congress to
address additional concerns. This supplemental request and the FY 2001 budget
will significantly increase funding for the two GDP sites.
The FY 2001
budget request also provides funding, subject to new legislative authority, to
initiate cleanup of uranium mill tailings in Moab, Utah, to restore lands at the
gateways of some of our most spectacular national parks. We also continue the
Privatization Initiative and request an increase to support the Tank Waste
The Environment, Safety and Health budget provides
an increase of $38 million, to $166 million,
to make health and safety programs a key priority of the entire department. This
includes $17 million for the Energy Employee Compensation
The Civilian Radioactive Waste Management program is funded
at $437 million to support determination of the suitability of
Yucca Mountain as a permanent repository for nuclear waste. An
increase of $77 million for Yucca Mountain
design and engineering works allows DOE to maintain the schedule of work
included in the Viability Assessment. The work performed in FY 2001 will end the
site characterization phase of this project and support completion of the
scientific and technical requirements necessary to determine whether the site is
suitable for development as a geologic repository.
$6.6 billion (an increase of $502 million, or
8 percent) to promote peace and address the next generation of national security
threats. The National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2000 created a
semi-autonomous agency within the Department, the National Nuclear Security
Administration (NNSA). These national security program increases are necesssary
to ensure the safety, security, and reliability of America's nuclear weapons
stockpile, reduce nuclear proliferation threats world-wide, and protect against
the threat of weapons of mass destruction. A total of $6.2
billion-up $432 million from thefunding level for these
programs in FY 2000-is requested for departmental programs that are consolidated
into the NNSA (Defense Programs, Nonproliferation and National Security, Fissile
Materials Disposition, and Naval Reactors). The Albuquerque and Nevada Field
Operations offices also are under the jurisdiction of the NNSA.
Defense Programs budget is $4.6 billion, an increase of
$273 million over FY 2000, to strengthen the stockpile
stewardship program, maintain a skilled workforce, and develop and implement
tools required to ensure the safety and reliability of America's nuclear
deterrent without nuclear weapons testing. In addition, we have requested
$55 million in supplemental FY 2000 funding for DOE's weapons
production facilities and to meet DOE/DOD weapons refurbishment deadlines.
The request for the Office of Naval Reactors funds its mission to
provide the Navy with safe, long-lived nuclear propulsion plants and to ensure
their reliable operation, in keeping with the Nation's defense requirements. The
program's responsibility extends from technology development through reactor
operations to, ultimately, reactor plant disposal.
and National Security budget includes a new $100 million
Nonproliferation Program for Russia that, for the first time, proposes a
U.S.-Russian moratorium on increasing the stockpile of separated plutonium.
Other parts of this program expand work already underway with our Russian
counterparts (e.g., Material Protection, Control and Accounting) and add
entirely new categories such as Russian Navy nuclear sites. This year's budget
also includes increased funding for the Russian Nuclear Cities project which
helps to engage Russian nuclear scientists and engineers in peaceful projects at
The budget also requests $223
million for the Office of Fissile Materials Disposition for continuing the path
forward to store and dispose of U. S. weapons usable fissile materials.
The remaining national security budget request includes department- wide
offices of the Secretary of Energy that are not part of the NNSA. The most
significant increase is for the Office of Security and Emergency Operations,
with a program level of $340 million. The increase of
$48 million is mainly for additional cyber-security activities
Our FY 2001 budget is a strong
statement reflecting this Administration's commitments to the American people.
It is a request that emphasizes out strength in science and enables us to
effectively deliver our missions.
I look forward to working with you,
Mr. Chairman and other members of the Committee, to meet our responsibilities to
the American people.
March 7, 2000