Department of Energy (91 - 100 of 2,228 items)
Nuclear Nonproliferation: Additional Actions Needed to Increase the Security of U.S. Industrial Radiological Sources
GAO-14-293: Published: Jun 6, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 12, 2014.
GAO found that challenges exist in reducing the security risks faced by licensees using high-risk industrial radiological sources. Specifically, licensees face challenges in (1) securing mobile and stationary sources and (2) protecting against an insider threat. Regarding mobile sources, their portability makes them susceptible to theft or loss, as the size of some of these sources is small enough...
Nuclear Weapons: Ten-Year Budget Estimates for Modernization Omit Key Efforts, and Assumptions and Limitations Are Not Fully Transparent
GAO-14-373: Published: Jun 10, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 2014.
The Departments of Energy's (DOE) and Defense's (DOD) $263.8 billion, 10-year estimates in their report to Congress for sustaining and modernizing U.S. nuclear weapons capabilities are generally consistent with their funding plans through fiscal year 2018. However, GAO identified shortcomings with respect to the completeness of the budget estimates and the transparency of the assumptions and limit...
Department of Energy: Enhanced Transparency Could Clarify Costs, Market Impact, Risk, and Legal Authority to Conduct Future Uranium Transactions
GAO-14-291: Published: May 9, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 9, 2014.
The Department of Energy (DOE) undertook four uranium transactions involving USEC Inc. (USEC) in 2012 and 2013. These transactions served to provide the company with operating cash. According to DOE, the department benefited from these transactions in two ways: (1) by ensuring availability of domestic low-enriched uranium (LEU) for the production of tritium, a key radioactive isotope used to enhan...
Fusion Energy: Actions Needed to Finalize Cost and Schedule Estimates for U.S. Contributions to an International Experimental Reactor
GAO-14-499: Published: Jun 5, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 5, 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 (see fig.). DOE has identified several reasons for the changes, such as increases in hardware cost estimates as designs and requirements...
DOE Loan Programs: DOE Has Made More Than $30 Billion in Loans and Guarantees and Needs to Fully Develop Its Loan Monitoring Function
GAO-14-645T: Published: May 30, 2014. Publicly Released: May 30, 2014.
The Department of Energy‘s (DOE) three loan programs have made more than $30 billion in loans and loan guarantees for supporting certain renewable or innovative energy technologies. For the Section 1703 Loan Guarantee Program (LGP), begun in 2006, borrowers generally must pay credit subsidy costs for the loans. In 2014, DOE guaranteed its first two loans under Section 1703 for a total of $6.2 bi...
Alternative Jet Fuels: Federal Activities Support Development and Usage, but Long-term Commercial Viability Hinges on Market Factors
GAO-14-407: Published: May 7, 2014. Publicly Released: May 7, 2014.
The federal government supports the development and use of alternative jet fuels through both broad and targeted initiatives. Broad national strategies promote the development of a variety of alternative fuels—including alternative jet fuel—to help achieve national goals, such as securing energy independence, fostering economic development, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, t...
Federal Vehicle Fleets: GSA Has Opportunities to Further Encourage Cost Savings for Leased Vehicles
GAO-14-443: Published: May 7, 2014. Publicly Released: May 7, 2014.
Some aspects of the General Service Administration's (GSA) leasing rates, terms, and services support agency efforts to reduce fleet costs, while others do not. For example, GSA procures the vehicles it leases at a discount and passes those savings on to its customers, provides agencies with data analyses that can be used to eliminate unnecessary vehicles, and identifies fraud, waste, and abuse re...
DOE Loan Programs: DOE Should Fully Develop Its Loan Monitoring Function and Evaluate Its Effectiveness
GAO-14-367: Published: May 1, 2014. Publicly Released: May 1, 2014.
The Department of Energy (DOE) has not fully developed or consistently adhered to loan monitoring policies for its loan programs. In particular, DOE has established policies for most loan monitoring activities, but policies for evaluating and mitigating program-wide risk remain incomplete and outdated. These activities are generally the responsibility of the Risk Management Division in DOE's Loan...
Electricity Markets: Demand-Response Activities Have Increased, but FERC Could Improve Data Collection and Reporting Efforts
GAO-14-73: Published: Mar 27, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 28, 2014.
Since 2004, the federal government has made efforts to facilitate demand-response activities, including expanding their use in wholesale electricity markets. Among these efforts, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued regulatory orders affecting Regional Transmission Organizations (RTO)—entities that operate the transmission system and administer wholesale markets in some parts o...
National Environmental Policy Act: Little Information Exists on NEPA Analyses
GAO-14-370: Published: Apr 15, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 15, 2014.
Governmentwide data on the number and type of most National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analyses are not readily available, as data collection efforts vary by agency. NEPA generally requires federal agencies to evaluate the potential environmental effects of actions they propose to carry out, fund, or approve (e.g., by permit) by preparing analyses of different comprehensiveness depending on t...