US President Donald Trump’s has proposed to increase funding for coal while reducing the money available to support schemes for nuclear energy and clean power.
Under his latest budget proposal, he would offer $502 million (£361m) for fossil energy research and development, an increase of $81 million (£58m) on the year before, which the President says would be used to make coal and natural gas-fired systems more efficient.
The budget would provide $757 million (£544m) for nuclear energy funding, $259 million (£186m) below current levels.
This would support research and development into advanced manufacturing methods, instrumentation and reactor technologies, including $54 million (£39m) for small modular reactors (SMRs).
The President also hopes to reduce the renewable energy and efficiency budget from last year’s $1.3 billion (£900m) to $696 million (£500m).
However, his government said the cuts were not being made because the administration doesn’t care about the environment.
Mark Menezes, the Department of Energy’s Undersecretary for Science, said: “This biggest reason for that is the accomplishments that these individual programs have made.
“You’ll see the reason is because all of the goals that the Office of Management and Budget has set, the cost reduction goals, these goals have been met or exceeded by most of these programmes over the last four to five years.”