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DOE Audit: Labs Not Aggressive in Energy, Cost Savings

An inspector general’s audit found the Energy Department’s national laboratories are not aggressively pursuing energy- and cost-saving opportunities, Fierce Government IT reports.

The IG’s office evaluated the Brookhaven, Oak Ridge and Los Alamos national laboratories and the Y-12 National Security Complex in Tennessee for its report, Greg Slabodkin writes.

For all of DOE’s 47 major sites, auditors reported $277 million in energy costs for fiscal year 2010.

Auditors found DOE could have saved about $6.6 million annually of the $42 million in available energy-saving opportunities as defined by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, according to the report.

That law requires the federal government to cut 30 percent of energy costs by fiscal year 2015 and agencies to evaluate facilities that consume 75 percent of total facility energy use every four years, Slabodkin writes.

Brookhaven, Oak Ridge and Los Alamos laboratories did not always identify potential energy conservation actions, while Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Y-12 did not always evaluate heating and lighting at existing buildings, the audit said.

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