(Washington, DC) House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Ranking Member Frank Lucas led a group of Republicans in a letter to the Department of Energy (DOE) today conducting oversight of the Department’s new Clean Energy Corps. The letter to Secretary Jennifer Granholm raised questions about the Department’s plan to hire 1,000 new employees “with a mission of supercharging the clean energy revolution.”  

This hiring initiative will be the largest DOE staff expansion in more than four decades and will substantially increase the size of the Department’s workforce. Yet DOE has provided almost no details to Congress about this initiative.

“The Clean Energy Corps, as described by the Department’s website, is a massive hiring initiative with grandiose goals and few specifics,” the Members wrote. “As the Committee tasked with oversight of the Department’s critical research and development programs, we are concerned that the Clean Energy Corps lacks strategy and focus. We are disturbed that the Department is moving to implement this program before sharing important information with Congress. If poorly implemented, the Clean Energy Corps has the potential to be a significant waste of taxpayer dollars that, instead of furthering the Department’s work to develop clean energy solutions, will drain resources and focus from critical research activities.”

The letter is a continuation of efforts to oversee the Clean Energy Corps. At a recent hearing on Federal Climate Adaptation and Resilience, Members tried to get information on how the Corps would be integrated into the Department, how the Department will ensure it doesn’t duplicate existing work, and whether the Corps would siphon resources away from other critical efforts.

The Members requested a briefing from DOE to answer these questions and address concerns about the structure and justification for this initiative.