The Department of Energy is a multi-faceted agency responsible for executing some of the Nation's most complex and technologically advanced missions. Since the passage of the Department of Energy Organization Act in 1977, the Department has shifted its emphasis and priorities over time as the Nation's energy and security needs have evolved. In recent years, the Department has focused on issues such as clean energy innovation, energy efficiency and conservation, and science and engineering research and development. While these areas have received increased attention, the Department has continued its vital work in the areas of environmental cleanup, nuclear weapons stewardship, and nuclear nonproliferation. In order to execute this diverse portfolio, the Department receives an annual appropriation approaching $30 billion, employs more than 115,000 Federal and contractor personnel, and manages assets valued at more than $180 billion, including, among other facilities, 16 Federally Funded Research and Development Centers.
With this diverse set of agency objectives in mind, on an annual basis, the Office of Inspector General identifies what it considers to be the most significant management challenges facing the Department. Now codified as part of the Reports Consolidation Act of 2000, under this effort we assess the agency's progress in addressing previously identified challenges and consider emerging issues facing the Department. Consistent with our mission, our goal is to use this process to advance efforts to work with the Department to enhance the effectiveness of agency programs and operations.