Energy Technology R&D Funding November, 2004
Key Energy Technology Investment Trends • General Trends • Overall funding in the U.S. for energy technology has declined from a high of around $6 billion in the early 1990s to around $5 billion. This is a 25 year low when viewed across a longer period of time stretching back into the mid 1980s. • While there appears to be a growing consensus in the governmental and academics committees that the U.S. is not currently investing enough in energy technologies to address future needs, funding has continued to decline • Public and private sector funding for energy technology is roughly split with public sector funding accounting for 56% of the effort and private sector funding accounting for 43% • Private Sector Funding • The private sector invests less than 1% of sales in energy R&D (estimates range from between .03 and .05 percent). This figure is well below other industries, particularly in the pharmaceutical and IT area • Funding for collaborative research organizations, such as EPRI, have declined particularly in the area of strategic, as opposed to applied, R&D • Private sector investments in energy efficiency and renewables have increased while investments in fossil fuels and nuclear have decreased • Public Sector Funding • Public sector energy research funding has declined 58 percent over a fifteen year period • Funding for fossil and nuclear energy research has declined while renewable energy has remained flat
Private Sector R&D Investment R&D as % of Net Sales by Industry Percent Drugs/Medicine Prof./Science Industry Comm. Equipment Services Transp. Equipment Industrial Chemicals Stone/Clay/Glass Products Primary Metals Energy Source: Margolis and Kammen
Government Energy R&D Budget Government Energy R&D Budget Billion 1995 US$ -58% -20% -65% -6% -89% -53% -32% D = +129% -12% Note: Government energy R&D budgets for selected IEA countries showing the difference in spending D between 1980 and 1995. Data for France before 1990 are unavailable, and while we display 1990 and 1995 data for France, this comparison likely understates the decline in R&D funding in France.