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FY 2017 Department of Energy Budget Request Fact Sheet

Editors Note:

For full FY17 budget request materials, click here.

For the Department's FY17 budget request press release, click here.

For the White House's Mission Innovation fact sheet, click here.

Under the President’s leadership, we have turned our economy around and created 14 million jobs. Our unemployment rate is below five percent for the first time in almost eight years. Nearly 18 million people have gained health coverage as the Affordable Care Act has taken effect. And we have dramatically cut our deficits by almost three-quarters and set our Nation on a more sustainable fiscal path.

Yet while it is important to take stock of our progress, this Budget is not about looking back at the road we have traveled. It is about looking forward and making sure our economy works for everybody, not just those at the top. It is about choosing investments that not only make us stronger today, but also reflect the kind of country we aspire to be – the kind of country we want to pass on to our children and grandchildren.

The Budget makes critical investments in our domestic and national security priorities while adhering to the bipartisan budget agreement signed into law last fall, and it lifts sequestration in future years so that we continue to invest in our economic future and our national security. It also drives down deficits and maintains our fiscal progress through smart savings from health care, immigration, and tax reforms.

The Budget shows that the President and the Administration remain focused on meeting our greatest challenges – including accelerating the pace of innovation to tackle climate change and find new treatments for devastating diseases; giving everyone a fair shot at opportunity and economic security; and advancing our national security and global leadership – not only for the year ahead, but for decades to come.

With the help of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) programs, the U.S. has strengthened its economy, advanced clean energy, and increased energy and nuclear security. The Department leads the nation in the research, development, demonstration, and deployment of an extensive range of clean energy and efficiency technologies, supporting the President’s Climate Action Plan and an energy strategy that uses every appropriate tool to combat climate change.  And the Department will continue meeting the challenges of cleaning up our Cold War environmental legacy and modernizing our nuclear deterrent while securing dangerous nuclear and radiological materials around the world.  To support this mission, the Budget provides $32.5 billion in total funding for DOE, including $30.2 billion in discretionary funding and $2.3 billion in new direct spending authority. This funding level will support the President’s goals in the areas of nuclear security, clean energy, environmental cleanup, climate change, science and innovation.

Funding Highlights:

The President’s Budget provides a total of $32.5 billion, $30.2 billion in discretionary funding and $2.3 billion in new mandatory funding in FY 2017 to support the Department of Energy in the areas of nuclear security, clean energy, environmental cleanup, climate change response, science and innovation.  This includes:

  • Increasing investments for clean energy research and development to $5.9 billion in discretionary funds supporting Mission Innovation - the landmark commitment to accelerate public and private global clean energy innovation announced at the start of the Paris climate negotiations.  The U.S. is seeking to double clean energy R&D funding in five years and the Department’s investment is about 76 percent of the $7.7 billion government-wide FY 2017 contribution toward this pledge.
  • Investing nearly $1.5 billion in mandatory funding in FY 2017 for clean energy technology development and deployment; $1.3 billion for advanced clean transportation ($11.3 billion over ten years) and $150 million for the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) ($1.85 billion over five years).
  • Providing nearly $5.7 billion to support fundamental research in high energy, nuclear, and plasma physics; materials and chemistry; biological systems and earth system components; and mathematics—as well as crosscutting high-performance computation and simulation and basic research that underpins advances in clean energy.
  • Continuing to invest in our nuclear security with $12.9 billion for the National Nuclear Security Administration to maintain a safe, reliable and effective stockpile without testing, modernize the nuclear security infrastructure, reduce the threats of nuclear proliferation and nuclear terrorism, and provide a 21st century capability for the nuclear Navy.
  • Investing $6.1 billion to protect human health and the environment by cleaning up the Department’s legacy of nuclear waste and contamination.


  • Supports DOE’s emphasis on management and performance by investing in efforts to improve and implement recommendations from its evidence-based reviews on project management, Departmental infrastructure, human resource delivery, and information technology infrastructure.

Invests in Clean Energy, Science, and Jobs of the Future

The Budget invests $12.6 billion for science and energy, including $11 billion in discretionary funding and $1.6 billion in new direct spending authority, to support the President’s strategy to combat climate change by supporting innovation across a diverse portfolio of energy technologies as we work to enhance economic competitiveness and America’s long-term energy security. More than $1 billion will be used for crosscutting research and development across seven Department initiatives focusing on electric grid modernization, subsurface science and technology, supercritical CO2 in electric power generation, the energy-water nexus, exascale computing, cybersecurity, and advanced materials.

Highlights of the investment in science and energy include $2.9 billion for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy to build on the Administration’s success in reducing U.S. dependence on fossil fuels, promoting energy efficiency, and doubling U.S. renewable electricity generation through investments in: a diverse suite of sustainable transportation technologies; renewable generation technologies; development of manufacturing technologies; and enhanced energy efficiency in our homes, buildings and industries. In addition, $1.3 billion ($11.3 billion over ten years) will support game-changing investments in clean transportation infrastructure and technology as part of the Administration’s 21st Century Clean Transportation Plan,. The Budget includes $600 million for Fossil Energy Research and Development to continue work on carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies, improve advanced energy systems integrated with CCS, and conduct research and development related to reducing the environmental impacts of fossil energy supply, including greenhouse gas emissions from natural gas technologies. It also includes $994 million to support research and development of nuclear energy technologies, including advanced reactors and fuel cycle technologies, and implement the Administration’s integrated nuclear waste management strategy. Lastly, the Budget provides $262 million for the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability to strengthen and transform the Nation’s grid.

The Budget includes $500 million for the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy, $350 million in new appropriations and $150 million in new mandatory spending authority, to accelerate transformative applied energy research and development.

In addition, the Budget includes nearly $5.7 billion for the Office of Science in continued support for basic science research and infrastructure to promote long-term economic growth and competitiveness. The Budget funds research grants and unique scientific facilities in multiple areas of science, including physics, biology, climate and environmental sciences, fusion, computational and mathematical sciences, materials science, and chemistry. The DOE National Laboratory system provides unique and unparalleled scientific research facilities for more than 31,000 scientists annually. In addition, the Budget includes a mandatory proposal for a new $100 million competitive grant opportunity targeted solely at university-based researchers.

It also includes a proposal for $4 billion of loan guarantee authority for innovative advanced fossil, nuclear, and renewable energy and efficiency projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This additional loan guarantee authority will be added to existing solicitations for advanced nuclear energy, advanced fossil energy, renewable energy and efficiency, and advanced technology vehicle manufacturing projects.  The budget also supports clean energy development in Indian country and technology commercialization initiatives focused on improving National Laboratory access and knowledge transfer to industry.

Protects Americans from Nuclear Threats

The Budget invests $12.9 billion in nuclear security, including $1.8 billion for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, to continue the critical missions of securing or eliminating nuclear and radiological materials worldwide, preventing proliferation of nuclear technologies, and ensuring that the United States is ready to respond to nuclear and radiological incidents at home and abroad. Additionally, the Budget supports implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. It also terminates the Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility (MOX), and instead proposes a program for dilution and disposal of plutonium, enabling DOE to begin and complete targeted disposal many years sooner and at far less cost than with MOX.

The Budget provides $9.2 billion to ensure that we maintain a safe, secure and effective nuclear stockpile. In addition to continuing to fund life extensions of current weapons (W88, B61, W76, and W80), the Budget accelerates weapons dismantlement by 20 percent compared to prior year plans. The Budget increases funding for exascale computing to improve the performance of the nuclear weapons computer modeling and simulation tools needed to ensure the safety, security, and reliability of the nuclear stockpile without conducting nuclear tests.

The Budget also includes $1.4 billion to support U.S. Navy nuclear propulsion, including development of a new reactor for the replacement ballistic missile submarine program, and additional funding for a new facility to store spent nuclear fuel from naval reactors.

Continues Progress on Nuclear Legacy Waste Cleanup

The Budget provides $6.1 billion, including a proposal for mandatory funding of $674 million, for the Department to address its responsibilities for the cleanup of large quantities of liquid radioactive waste, spent nuclear fuel, contaminated soil and groundwater, and decommissioning excess facilities used during development of the nation’s nuclear weapons program. This includes $2.4 billion to maintain progress on constructing and operating facilities to address waste stored in underground tanks at sites in Washington, South Carolina, and Idaho. The Budget also proposes $271 million to continue recovery activities and safely resume waste emplacement operations at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant.

Cuts Wasteful Spending and Improves Efficiency

The Budget continues efforts to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of DOE administration and programs. DOE is aggressively pursuing implementation of an evidence based initiative to improve project management. The Budget includes $5 million to establish an independent, statutory office, similar to that at the Department of Defense, for cost estimating and program evaluation to set cost assessment policy and provide timely, unbiased analysis and cost estimation. The Budget also supports ongoing efforts to consolidate and improve human resource management services, to enhance cyber security while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of information technology programs, and to revitalize general-purpose infrastructure by focusing on maintenance to ensure safe operations.