Program evaluation (41 - 50 of 255 items)
Nuclear Nonproliferation: DOE Needs to Address Uncertainties with and Strengthen Independent Safety Oversight of Its Plutonium Disposition Program
GAO-10-378: Published: Mar 26, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 26, 2010.
The end of the Cold War left the United States with a surplus of weapons-grade plutonium, which poses proliferation and safety risks. Much of this material is found in a key nuclear weapon component known as a pit. The Department of Energy (DOE) plans to dispose of at least 34 metric tons of plutonium by fabricating it into mixed oxide (MOX) fuel for domestic nuclear reactors. To do so, DOE's Nati...
Recovery Act: Factors Affecting the Department of Energy's Program Implementation
GAO-10-497T: Published: Mar 4, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 4, 2010.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act)--initially estimated to cost $787 billion in spending and tax provisions--aims to promote economic recovery, make investments, and minimize or avoid reductions in state and local government services. The Recovery Act provided the Department of Energy (DOE) more than $43.2 billion, including $36.7 billion for projects and activities...
Oil and Gas Bonds: Bonding Requirements and BLM Expenditures to Reclaim Orphaned Wells
GAO-10-245: Published: Jan 27, 2010. Publicly Released: Feb 26, 2010.
The Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 directs the Department of the Interior (Interior) to manage lands for multiple uses while also taking any action to prevent "unnecessary or undue degradation" of the land. To do this, Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM), among other things, requires oil and gas operators to reclaim the land they disturb and post a bond to help ensure they d...
Nuclear Nonproliferation: National Nuclear Security Administration Has Improved the Security of Reactors in its Global Research Reactor Program, but Action Is Needed to Address Remaining Concerns
GAO-09-949: Published: Sep 17, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 17, 2009.
Worldwide, about 165 research reactors use highly enriched uranium (HEU) fuel. Because HEU can also be used in nuclear weapons, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) established the Global Research Reactor Security (GRRS) program to make security upgrades at foreign research reactors whose security did not meet guidelines established by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)....
Energy Policy Act of 2005: Greater Clarity Needed to Address Concerns with Categorical Exclusions for Oil and Gas Development under Section 390 of the Act
GAO-09-872: Published: Sep 16, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 16, 2009.
The Energy Policy Act of 2005 was enacted in part to expedite oil and gas development. Section 390 of the act authorized the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to use categorical exclusions to streamline the environmental analysis required when approving certain oil and gas activities. Numerous questions have been raised about how and when BLM should use these section 390...
Federal Oil And Gas Management: Opportunities Exist to Improve Oversight
GAO-09-1014T: Published: Sep 16, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 16, 2009.
In fiscal year 2008, the Department of the Interior collected over $22 billion in royalties and other fees related to oil and gas. Within Interior, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages onshore federal oil and gas leases, and the Minerals Management Service's (MMS) Offshore Energy and Minerals Management (OEMM) manages offshore leases. A federal lease gives the lessee rights to explore for a...
Nuclear Waste: DOE's Environmental Management Initiatives Report Is Incomplete
GAO-09-697R: Published: Jun 2, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 2, 2009.
The Department of Energy (DOE) spends billions of dollars annually to clean up nuclear waste at sites across the nation that produced nuclear weapons from the 1940s through the end of the Cold War. This waste can threaten public health and the environment. For example, contaminants at DOE's Hanford site in Washington have migrated through the soil into the groundwater, which generally flows toward...
Nuclear Nonproliferation: Strengthened Oversight Needed to Address Proliferation and Management Challenges in IAEA's Technical Cooperation Program
GAO-09-275: Published: Mar 5, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 31, 2009.
A key mission of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is promoting the peaceful uses of nuclear energy through its Technical Cooperation (TC) program, which provides equipment, training, fellowships, and other services to its member states. The United States provides approximately 25 percent of the TC program's annual budget. This report addresses the (1) extent to which the United States...
Clean Coal: DOE's Decision to Restructure FutureGen Should Be Based on a Comprehensive Analysis of Costs, Benefits, and Risks
GAO-09-248: Published: Feb 13, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2009.
Coal-fired power plants generate about one-half of the nation's electricity and about one-third of its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, which contribute to climate change. In 2003, the Department of Energy (DOE) initiated FutureGen--a commercial-scale, coal-fired power plant to incorporate integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC), an advanced generating technology, with carbon capture and stor...
Clean Coal: DOE Should Prepare a Comprehensive Analysis of the Relative Costs, Benefits, and Risks of a Range of Options for FutureGen
GAO-09-465T: Published: Mar 11, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2009.
This testimony discusses our recent report on the Department of Energy's (DOE) decision to restructure the FutureGen program. The original FutureGen plant was to capture and store underground about 90 percent of its CO2 emissions. DOE's cost share was to be 74 percent, and industry partners agreed to fund the rest. Concerned about escalating costs, DOE announced in January 2008 that it had decided...