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The FY 1991 request for Analytical Technology is $17.0 million. This request will provide for research directed at developing new and more sensitive instruments to make physical, chemical and biological measurements of energyrelated emissions. These instruments will also assist scientists in measuring human exposure and biological response to those emissions. These more precise measurements are crucial to further progress in understanding indoor radon, as well as damage to DNA and to the environment from energy-related missions.
The FY 1991 budget request for Environmental Research is $44.7 million. This research activity, together with the Carbon Dioxide Research activity, which I will discuss next, provides information needed to address a number of important issues, including atmospheric chemistry, global climate processes, the resiliency of ecosystems and marine coastal areas to energy activities, and environmental restoration around DOE facilities that have been used for
energy and weapons-related operations and R&D.
The Environmental Research request will provide for continued research aimed at determining how energy-related agents move through and are changed by the atmosphere, oceanic and terrestrial ecosystems, and how they ultimately affect humans. Scientists are also looking at how the environment itself may be affected by energy-related activities and how negative effects can be
The FY 1991 request will also support a series of major field studies of the processing of sulphur and nitrogen oxides by clouds and precipitation, and the mechanisms by which they are deposited on sensitive ecosystems. This work
will contribute to a more informed approach to possible emission control strategies aimed at addressing the acid rain problem.
Long-term research directed at contamination of subsurface sediments and
ground water by mixed wastes from DOE sites will also be carried out. This
research provides the underpinning for cost-effective management and remediation of contamination from the Department's energy and weapons-related project wastes. One example of the productive results stemming from research in this area is the recent development at Pacific Northwest Laboratory of an innovative sensor for detecting liquid contaminants such as fuel oil or solvents within soil. This sensor is less expensive, simpler, and more accurate than existing sensors, and the technology is now available to industry for commercialization. In FY 1991, research related to subsurface contamination will be directed at improved environmental measurement technology and at physical, chemical, and biological interactions that control the transport of mixed contaminants. Research on biological remediation
techniques using microorganisms found at depths of up to 2000 feet also will
Another very important research area in FY 1991 relates to possible global
change from the increase of greenhouse gases and, especially, from carbon
dioxide. The Department's Carbon Dioxide Research program, for which the FY 1991 budget request is $65.9 million, is the principal DOE activity in the U.S. Global Change Research Program organized by the Committee on Earth Sciences (CES) of the Office of Science and Technology Policy. The Secretary of Energy has identified global climate change as an important environmental
consideration in the development of the National Energy Strategy. Consequently, DOE has launched a major research initiative to provide the scientific underpinning for prediction of global and regional climate change. A principal component of this initiative is an experimental program to quantify cloud formation processes. Using measurement and modeling techniques, researchers will examine the roles of clouds and their effect on the sun's naturally occurring radiation (i.e., the radiative effect) in climate change. The information gained from such research is essential for improved prediction. A second component is an effective integration of advanced computer hardware and software with the next-generation climate models in order to accelerate computer operations by a factor of 10,000 within
the next ten years.
The program will continue to seek multidisciplinary input from the scientific community to gain a broad perspective. Climate change research activities throughout the Department are being coordinated by the Office of Energy Research, with interagency coordination being implemented through the CES. International activities are coordinated through such organizations as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The Medical Applications activity, with an FY 1991 budget request of $37.0 million, carries out a wide range of projects aimed at the beneficial medical application of energy-related technologies. Over the years, the Department's
medical research has provided information that has led to the widespread use
of nuclear technology in modern clinical and laboratory medicine, opening
avenues of diagnosis and treatment that otherwise would not have been
available. Research in FY 1991 will focus on non-invasive diagnosis and treatment techniques, development of improved instrumentation, and improved methods for studying brain and heart function and for diagnosing abnormalities in these organs.
For instance, studies using Positron Emission Tomography, commonly known as PET scans, have identified areas in the brain that are most
affected by alcohol and cocaine. These studies provide information about the
neurochemical mechanisms through which these substances act on the brain.
Further studies will be directed to determining whether it is possible to recover from the damage that is produced. Another use of PET scans is to locate the lesions in the brain that cause epileptic seizures. This information is useful as a guide to surgical treatment. PET scans can also help to determine which patients will benefit from coronary by-pass surgery.
The FY 1991 request for Program Direction is $5.8 million. These funds are required to pay for the personnel costs of 65 full-time equivalent (FTE) staff to direct, manage, and support BER's multidisciplinary research efforts. The FY 1991 request for Capital Equipment is $11.6 million. This request supports replacement of deteriorated and obsolete equipment at the laboratories as well as acquisition of new, state-of-the-art equipment, particularly for human genome and carbon dioxide research.
The request for Construction in FY 1991 is $3.5 million. The General Plant Projects that fall under this request are necessary to keep the general plant of the laboratories (e.g., buildings, roads, and utilities) in good operating condition.
Now let me turn to the several ER programs that are related to my statutory responsibilities to advise the Secretary on DOE's research and development programs, on the non-weapons multiprogram laboratories, and on the education and training of scientists and engineers.
ENERGY RESEARCH ANALYSES
The Energy Research Analyses (ERA) program carries out technical assessments and research analyses that cover all aspects of the Department's civilian R&D programs. These in-depth reviews provide information on the quality of the research and its impact, as well as identify opportunities for future research. In 1989, reviews of the Photovoltaics, Flue Gas Cleanup, and Chemical Toxicology programs were completed. A major research needs assessment on coal liquefaction was also completed and will provide valuable information to help guide the program for the next several years.
In addition to carrying out technical assessments and analyses, the ERA
program plays a key role in coordinating the Department's involvement in acid
rain research. Specifically, the program provides funds under the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program (NAPAP) for summarizing the state of the science in acid rain research and producing assessment reports useful to policymakers. ERA's emphasis on technical peer reviews has made a major contribution to NAPAP's final report which is being prepared in FY 1990 and will be completed in FY 1991.