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Proposed Budget Hit or Miss for Buildings Industry
President Bush’s requested budget for FY 2009 I a mixed bag for the building industry and sustainable energy initiatives.
The Department of Energy (DOE) Building Technologies Program will receive a proposed modest gain of $15 million over last year’s funding level. The administration is also looking into strengthening building energy codes by 30 percent over current levels, according to the Alliance to Save Energy.
However, EPA’s Energy Star program received a 9 percent, $8 million cut in funding to $44 million.
Other energy efficiency program budgets are proposed cut as well, including the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the DOE. The proposed FY 2009 budget is $1.25 billion, a 27 percent cut from FY 2008 budget of $1.72 billion.
Other areas of funding include:
- $14 million to meet the increased permitting and environmental review responsibilities that have come with the upsurge in proposed energy projects in response to higher energy prices
- $49.2 million for clean diesel grants, with $15 million specifically targeted to EPA’s Sustainable Ports Initiative
- $555.5 million for clean water grants and $842.2 million for drinking water grants
- $186 million for state and local air grants
- $98 million for EPA's climate change programs to build upon partnership efforts to achieve reductions in US greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to the goal or reducing greenhouse gas intensity by 18 percent by 2012
- $16 million for global climate change research