The GOP-controlled U.S. House of Representatives released information about the Energy and Water appropriations bill for the fiscal year of 2012. The bill released totals $30.6 billion, $1 billion less than the previous year and $5.9 billion below President Obama’s request.
The legislation determines how much the Department of Energy (DOE) will receive, and to an extent, how the funds will be allocated amongst DOE’s various agencies and funding programs.
One program especially hurt by these potential cuts is the DOE’s popular ARPA-E program, a venture-like initiative that provides bridge financing to developers of cutting edge clean technologies that, otherwise, would have hard time securing more conventional venture financing. The Obama administration requested $650 million for ARPA-E but Republicans allocated a low $200 million for the program.
Some ARPA-E alumns include GE-backed solar wafer maker 1366 Technologies, turbine maker FloDesign Wind Turbine, which last year raised $35 million in a round of venture financing led by Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers. Energy storage company SunCatalix, which is backed by Polaris Venture Partners and the Tata Group, also secured initial financing from the ARPA-E program.