AAAS analysis finds Congress would add billions to FY 2008 R&D investment


The AAAS R&D Budget Program has been tracking federal R&D funding trends since 1976 as a service to the science, engineering and policymaking communities. Today, it is considered one of the nation's leading nonpartisan authorities on the federal investment in science and technology.

According to Koizumis latest report, the House has approved all 12 of its 2008 appropriations bills; the Senate Appropriations Committee has drafted 11 of its 12 bills, but the full Senate has approved only the spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security. The Senate still must draft a spending bill for the Department of Defense.

In all, appropriations approved by the House total $144.3 billion for R&D--$3.2 billion (or 2.3%) more than the current budget and $4 billion more than the White House 2008 budget proposal. The Senate would spend $500 million more on R&D than the House for the appropriations it has drafted.

Based on action thus far, Koizumi summarized Congressional moves in several critical S&T areas:

Energy: The Department of Energys (DOE) energy-related R&D initiatives had received significant increases in 2007, but the Bush administration requested cuts for 2008. Congress would keep increasing DOE energy R&D spending dramatically, by 18.5 percent in the House to $1.8 billion and a staggering 29 percent to $2.0 billion in the Senate for the renewable energy, fossil fuels, and energy conservation programs, Koizumi reported.

Environment and Climate Change: Congress would turn steep requested cuts into increases for environmental research programs, Koizumi found. Total R&D spending on environmental initiatives would rise 9.2% under House measures, compared to a 3% cut proposed by the Bush administration. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration R&D, for example, would get a 9.9% increase in the House and 18.1% in the Senate. Among other prospective winners: the U.S. Environmental Protection A

Contact: Earl Lane
American Association for the Advancement of Science

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