Under a $30.4 billion spending bill approved by the House of Representativesâ Appropriations Committee this week, nuclear energy programs would receive $656 million in fiscal 2014, down 13.5 percent from this year and well below the administrationâs request, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute.
The committee rejected President Obamaâs proposal to move the $93.5 million Idaho Safeguards and Security Program from Defense Programs to the Department of Energyâs Office of Nuclear Energy. This contributed to the lower overall funding level in the committeeâs spending bill as compared to the administrationâs budget request.
The appropriations bill provides $387.3 million for nuclear energy research and development, a 13 percent reduction from the current fiscal year and a four percent increase from the administrationâs budget request.
The largest nuclear energy R&D program in the House spending bill is the licensing support effort for small reactors of fewer than 300 megawatts in electric generating capacity. The small reactor program would receive $110 million next year. That is a 66 percent increase from the current fiscal year and a 57 percent increase from the administrationâs budget blueprint.
The fuel cycle R&D program would receive $91 million in fiscal 2014, a reduction of 50 percent from the current year and a decrease of 45 percent from the administrationâs spending proposal.
The Yucca Mountain, Nev., nuclear waste repository programâunfunded in the administrationâs budgetâwould receive $25 million under the House spending plan. The House Appropriations legislation does not fund the Department of Energyâs strategy to implement the nuclear waste management recommendations of the Presidentâs Blue Ribbon Commission on Americaâs Nuclear Future.
Another program not funded by the administrationâthe integrated university program that provides support for the sectorâs workforce of the futureâwould receive $5.5 million for DOEâs Office of Nuclear Energy and $15 million for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission under the House Appropriations measure.
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