Perry responds to requests for commitment on continued DOE climate research, cybersecurity efforts

Published on January 24, 2017 by Daily Energy Insider Reports

Ranking Member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Maria Cantwell (D-WA) recently questioned former Gov. Rick Perry, the President’s pick for energy secretary, on his support for climate research and cybersecurity efforts at the Department of Energy (DOE), as well as for National Lab employees.

Given the DOE’s important role in climate and technology research, Cantwell requested a commitment
from Perry that he would continue funding for research in these areas.

“I’m going to protect all of the science, whether it’s related to the climate or to the other aspects of what we’re going to be doing,” Perry said.

Last month, the DOE received emails requesting the names of employees who had worked on climate science. Cantwell asked Perry for assurance that these employees would be treated fairly.

“My commitment to you, and the members of this committee, is to obviously not only reach across the political aisles, but also to work with the men and women who I have an extraordinary amount of respect for at the Department of Energy to find the solutions to these many challenges that we have,” Perry said.

Cantwell also urged Perry to adopt recommendations from the Quadrennial Energy Review on the DOE’s role in cybersecurity.

“No matter what players, whether it’s a formal state or a group loosely associated, if they’re trying to penetrate into Americans’ lives, whether it’s private citizens or the highest level of government, you will see me engaged at the highest levels, working across agencies, with DARPA, ARPA-E, ARPA-I [Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity],” Perry said. “I feel very certain, if confirmed, that we have in our scientific laboratories and private sectors the fertile minds, the technology and the ability to stop the cybersnooping or—for that matter—the intentions to do harm to our people.”