Renewables really are underfunded


In a paper published in the July 30, 1999 issue of Science, authors Robert Margolis of Princeton University and Daniel Kammen at the University of California at Berkeley have documented the significant decline of American energy technology research budgets since the early 1990's. US funding for clean energy research fell 56 percent between 1980 and 1995, resulting in Japan outdoing the US in the sale of solar cell products. The authors also found a correlation between the decrease in funding an the number of patents approved for clean energy technology. 


Total federal subsidies for 1999, in millions, (includes direct
expenditures, tax expenditures and r&d) : 


So, nuclear received almost twice as much in subsidies as renewables. (and keep in mind renewables includes much more than just wind: it includes solar, biomass, geothermal). For perspective: "The total estimate for all subsides, $6.2 billion, is only 1.1% of total annual expenditures on energy in the US."
Source: (numbers above from table ES3): Federal Financial
Interventions and Subsidies in Energy Markets 1999: Energy Transformation and End Use (published 5/2000 by the US Energy Information Administration publication No. SR/OIAF/2000-02). (available on