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Bush to endorse increased spending on renewable energy

wind turbines
Turbines generate power from the wind  

By Major Garrett
CNN White House Correspondent

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- In another reversal on energy conservation, President Bush on Thursday will endorse spending $100 million more than he originally requested for renewable energy programs.

Several administration sources tell CNN that Mr. Bush will endorse language in the a House spending bill that provides $377 million for renewable energy programs, a $100 million increase over the president's budget request.

The president will tour the Energy Department Thursday and deliver a brief speech extolling new fuel cell technology that could produce automobiles that run far more efficiently than current models. Several concept cars from GM, Ford and Chrysler have been flown to Washington for the event.

California's Power Crisis  

The funds support Energy Department programs for solar, wind, biomass and other renewable energy technologies.

The Office of Management and Budget endorsed the higher spending levels on Wednesday, sending a statement of administration policy to the Energy Department. The OMB said it favored the increased spending after conducting a review of administration efforts on renewable energy.

The White House encountered strong opposition when it sought to cut funds for renewable energy in its comprehensive energy plan. The House action fills the gap left by Mr. Bush's original proposal, but does not significantly increase federal allocations for renewables. The $377 million funding level is $1 million more than Congress allocated last year.

• Department of Energy
• California Energy Commission Homepage

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