Department of Energy (81 - 90 of 2,228 items)
Changing Crude Oil Markets: Allowing Exports Could Reduce Consumer Fuel Prices, and the Size of the Strategic Reserves Should Be Reexamined
GAO-14-807: Published: Sep 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 20, 2014.
The studies GAO reviewed and stakeholders interviewed suggest that removing crude oil export restrictions is likely to increase domestic crude oil prices but decrease consumer fuel prices. Prices for some U.S. crude oils are lower than international prices—for example, one benchmark U.S. crude oil averaged $101 per barrel in 2014, while a comparable international crude oil averaged $109. Studies...
Nuclear Weapons: Some Actions Have Been Taken to Address Challenges with the Uranium Processing Facility Design
GAO-15-126: Published: Oct 10, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 10, 2014.
In January 2013, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) completed a review to identify the factors that contributed to the space/fit issue with the Uranium Processing Facility (UPF), and identified a number of factors within both NNSA and the contractor managing the UPF design at that time. NNSA's review identified shortcomings in 1) federal oversight of the project, 2) design integra...
Natural Gas: Federal Approval Process for Liquefied Natural Gas Exports
GAO-14-762: Published: Sep 26, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 1, 2014.
Since 2010, of 35 applications it has received that require a public interest review, the Department of Energy (DOE) has approved 3 applications to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) and 6 applications are conditionally approved with final approval contingent on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) issuance of a satisfactory environmental review of the export facility. DOE considers a...
EPA Regulations and Electricity: Update on Agencies' Monitoring Efforts and Coal-Fueled Generating Unit Retirements
GAO-14-672: Published: Aug 15, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 15, 2014.
The Department of Energy (DOE), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) have taken initial steps to implement a recommendation GAO made in 2012 that these agencies develop and document a joint process to monitor industry's progress in responding to four proposed or finalized EPA regulations affecting coal-fueled generating units. GAO concluded...
Federally Funded Research Centers: Agency Reviews of Employee Compensation and Center Performance
GAO-14-593: Published: Aug 11, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 10, 2014.
The 30 federally funded research and development centers (FFRDC) sponsored by the Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Defense (DOD), and National Science Foundation (NSF) received nearly $84 billion in total funding for fiscal years 2008 through 2012. Of these 30 centers, the 16 sponsored by DOE received about 79 percent of this funding according to GAO's analysis of sponsoring agencies' res...
National Nuclear Security Administration: Agency Expanded Use of Some Federal Oversight Reforms, but Is Still Determining Future Plans
GAO-14-588: Published: Jul 17, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 17, 2014.
Key reforms at the National Nuclear Security Administration's (NNSA) Kansas City Plant (KCP)—a site in Missouri that manufactures electronic and other nonnuclear components of nuclear weapons—included (1) streamlining operating requirements by replacing Department of Energy (DOE) requirements with industry standards, where appropriate; (2) refocusing federal oversight to rely on contractor per...
Fusion Energy: Observations on DOE's Cost and Schedule Estimates for U.S. Contributions to an International Experimental Reactor
GAO-14-750T: Published: Jul 11, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 11, 2014.
Since the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) Agreement was signed in 2006, the Department of Energy's (DOE) estimated cost for the U.S. portion of ITER has grown by almost $3 billion, and its estimated completion date has slipped by 20 years. DOE has identified several reasons for the changes, such as increases in hardware cost estimates as designs and requirements have been m...
Nuclear Security: NNSA Should Establish a Clear Vision and Path Forward for Its Security Program
GAO-14-208: Published: May 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 30, 2014.
Implementation of security reforms from 2009 to 2012 generally varied among National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) sites. According to Department of Energy (DOE) and NNSA officials and contractors, some of these efforts helped manage security costs and enhance productivity, among other benefits, but may also have increased security risks and reduced security performance at the Y-12 Nation...
Advanced Reactor Research: DOE Supports Multiple Technologies, but Actions Needed to Ensure a Prototype Is Built
GAO-14-545: Published: Jun 23, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2014.
The Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Nuclear Energy's (NE) approach to advanced reactor research and development (R&D) focuses on three reactor technologies—high-temperature gas-cooled reactors, sodium-cooled fast reactors, and fluoride-salt-cooled high-temperature reactors—but NE is also funding research into other advanced reactor technologies. NE's approach is to conduct research in s...
Civilian Intelligence Community: Additional Actions Needed to Improve Reporting on and Planning for the Use of Contract Personnel
GAO-14-692T: Published: Jun 18, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 18, 2014.
Limitations in the intelligence community's (IC) inventory of contract personnel hinder the ability to determine the extent to which the eight civilian IC elements—the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), and six components within the Departments of Energy, Homeland Security, Justice, State, and the Treasury—use these personnel. The IC Chie...