Dept. of Energy

On December 16, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson met for the first time with his Secretary of Energy Advisory Board (SEAB). In welcoming Richardson, SEAB Chair Walter Massey of Morehouse College cited some of the Secretary's priorities for DOE: protecting national security, advancing the frontiers of science and technology, helping to solve the problems of global climate change, and promoting electricity deregulation, a balanced energy portfolio, and safe, efficient clean-up of DOE sites.

30 Dec 1998

A perennial subject for congressional hearings is national laboratory management reform. Congress is as fond of holding hearings on this topic as the Department of Energy is of studying laboratory management, or having others do so. This fall was no exception, with a late September joint hearing by two House science subcommittees on lab reform.

17 Nov 1998

An all-day meeting of the DOE Laboratory Operations Board (LOB) last Wednesday offered a good overview of some programs and major concerns facing DOE and its national laboratories. While there was little discussion about the Office of Energy Research, there was much conversation about the quality of DOE's research, and real concern about the ability of DOE to fill and retain technical manager positions. About the last issue, one board member warned that "the department will go brain dead" in five years unless DOE addresses this problem.

15 Sep 1998

On his second day at DOE, new Energy Secretary Bill Richardson announced that a major subcontractor has been selected to design and build the Department's Spallation Neutron Source (SNS). The facility, which is expected to cost a total of $1.3 billion and take approximately seven years to construct, "will provide researchers the most intense pulsed neutron beams in the world," Richardson said. "Their work could lead to advances ranging from improved medical implants to lubricants and stronger, lighter materials for tomorrow's more efficient automobiles."

2 Sep 1998

Yesterday, on his first day in the job, new Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson met with DOE employees to discuss his thoughts on, and priorities for, the Department. As he begins his tenure at DOE, Richardson has been asked by President Clinton to continue to serve as the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations into September, when nominee Richard Holbrooke will hopefully be confirmed to the U.N. position.

25 Aug 1998

On June 4 the Senate Appropriations Committee approved, by 27-0, the Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill for FY 1999, which funds the civilian R&D programs within the Department of Energy. The House Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee is scheduled to mark up its funding bill tomorrow.

9 Jun 1998

"There is never a perfect time for a decision like this, but I believe that after five and a half years as a member of the Clinton cabinet, the time is now."-- DOE Secretary Federico Pena

DOE Secretary Pena will leave the Department of Energy on June 30. In a hastily called news conference yesterday, Pena announced his resignation "for personal and family reasons," saying that he and his wife "have three wonderful children, and it is now time for us to focus on their futures."

7 Apr 1998

In the wake of the 1993 cancellation of the Superconducting Super Collider, DOE's High Energy Physics program has been guided by the 1994 report of its High Energy Physics Advisory Panel (HEPAP), "Vision for the Future of High-Energy Physics," commonly known as the Drell report. Now, a new HEPAP Subpanel, chaired by Fred Gilman, has completed its review of the status of the U.S. high energy physics (HEP) program and produced a draft report making recommendations for the next decade of the program. The Gilman Subpanel's draft report, "Planning for the Future of U.S.

24 Feb 1998

Below are details about the Department of Energy's FY 1999 budget request for High Energy Physics and Nuclear Physics. (Note: As always in comparing budgets from year to year, some funding changes may result from items being shifted to different accounts.) According to DOE, High Energy and Nuclear research "is preformed primarily at DOE National Laboratories using large particle accelerators and detectors. The research is conducted by over 3,000 researchers and over 1,000 graduate students from more than 100 universities and the National Laboratories.

4 Feb 1998

"This budget is about science, technology, and energy for our future." --Energy Secretary Federico Pena.

Presenting the Department of Energy's FY 1999 budget request, Secretary Federico Pena cited "advancing the frontiers of science and technology" as one of the four greatest challenges facing his department. "Science and technology underlie all of our work at the department," he said, "and we have a proud history of developing many of the innovations in science and technology that have kept U.S. industry on the cutting edge of intense international competition."

4 Feb 1998


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