The House of Representatives approved a bill on 6 June 2012 that, if enacted, would reduce funding for the Department of Energy’s Biological and Environmental Research (BER) program by $69 million (11 percent) in fiscal year 2013. The program is part of the department’s Office of Science, whose budget would be cut by $72 million to $4.8 billion.
The House bill would also gut funding for the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy, better known as ARPA-E. The House-passed funding level is a 27 percent reduction from the current level.
The bill, H.R. 5325, passed with the support of 255 Representatives (207 Republicans and 29 Democrats), and was opposed by 165 Representatives (48 Republicans and 136 Democrats).
A bill pending in the Senate would provide a modest increase of $35 million to the Office of Science. BER would receive $16 million in new funding if S. 2465 were enacted. The Senate Appropriations Committee approved the legislation in April, but the measure has not been considered by the full chamber.
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