House E&W FY19 Letter

House E&W FY19 Letter

March 30, 2018

Chairman Mike Simpson
2084 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Ranking Member Marcy Kaptur
2186 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Chairman Simpson and Ranking Member Kaptur:

The United States is facing strong international competition in the development of advanced energy technologies that are cleaner, cheaper, and more versatile than the current system of commercially available technologies. While American innovators have a long history of developing and improving energy technologies, it is essential that the nation maintains its competitiveness. Energy innovation fosters new and lucrative domestic industries, creates millions of well-paying American jobs, and improves energy security, while expanding the nation’s global influence.

American historical leadership in this area is unparalleled, but it is not guaranteed. In recent years, other nations have invested aggressively in the global clean-energy technology market. A recent report from the Boston Consulting Group1 revealed that China recently surpassed the U.S. in late-stage research and development support, and is continuing to accelerate these types of activities. If steps are not taken to bolster U.S. leadership in this sector, the nation could eventually need to import energy technologies from China, rather than domestically manufacture them and export them across the world.

One major advantage that the U.S. maintains over all other nations is the Department of Energy (DOE). The 17 world-class DOE-supported national energy laboratories, as well as the nation’s premier research universities and private research facilities, constitute the most comprehensive energy research and development network of its kind. Since its inception, the DOE has helped produce some of the most impactful technological advances of the modern era in energy, engineering, materials science, computing, physics, health sciences and more. Renewing the federal commitment to this R&D network is essential to ensuring American innovators stay ahead of the global competition.

R&D in this network must have ambitious “moonshot” technology development goals to define research programs. Part of that renewal must also be focused commitment towards the development and deployment of the next generation of clean energy and energy efficiency technologies. These goals can be used to focus research and provide an investment signal to American businesses.

The recently passed bipartisan budget deal allowed for strong funding across applied offices, which was reflected in the recently passed FY18 omnibus. As you develop FY2019 funding levels for DOE and all of its innovation programs, we respectfully request that you establish focused, strategic goals for DOE programs, as well as provide the Department the resources necessary to meet these ambitious benchmarks. These measures are essential to a strong domestic economy, energy security, the development and deployment of clean energy and energy efficiency technologies throughout our economy, and maintaining global leadership in energy innovation.

Sincerely,

Third Way
ClearPath Action
Natural Resources Defense Council
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
BPC Action
American Council for Capital Formation
Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions
BlueGreen Alliance
University of Tennessee System
Union of Concerned Scientists
Nuclear Energy Institute
Carbon Utilization Research Council
Southern States Energy Board
The Science Coalition
Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2)
Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES)
Clean Air Task Force
Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
Cloud Peak Energy
Center for Carbon Removal
SSTI
New Energy America
Alliance for Industrial Efficiency
Heat is Power Association

End Notes

  1. Hal Sirkin, Justin Rose, Rahul Choraria, "An Innovation-Led Boost for US Manufacturing," BCG. Accessed March 30, 2018. Available at: https://www.bcg.com/en-us/publications/2017/lean-innovation-led-boost-us-manufacturing.aspx.