Rick Perry embraces cuts to his clean energy budget

Testifying before Congress, U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Rick Perry dismissed concerns about President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to his agency’s energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers questioned the purpose of slashing the budget of the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy by 70 percent and eliminating the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy and Loan Program Office. New York representative Nita Lowey noted that the cuts “would do grievous harm to American families by abandoning scientific innovation and ignoring the pressing threat of climate change.” Under intense questioning, Perry at one point tried to explain, “I got here on the second day of March, and that budget was already written. My job is to sit here in front of you and to robustly defend it.” (Not exactly a robust defense there, Rick.) Perry then insisted that his agency will continue “to deliver the innovation and technology this country is going to need” despite the lack of support. Hard to see—and even harder for Perry to explain—how investing in America’s energy innovation can happen without the investing part.   

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