Studies say ARPA-E, EPA STAR programs have worked well and warrant continuation

By Megan Geuss, ARS Technica.

An independent review of ARPA-E and a graduate study program offered by the EPA has found that the two embattled, federally funded grant programs are necessary, contrary to claims made by Washington. The studies relied on years of record-keeping and could be useful for politicians arguing against the aggressive budget cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) proposed by the Trump administration.

The studies focused on the DOE’s ARPA-E (or Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy) program and the EPA’s STAR (Science To Achieve Results) program. The Trump administration has proposed that funding be cut entirely for ARPA-E and that funding for the EPA’s Office of Research and Development (which directed the STAR program) be cut by half.

Both studies were conducted by the National Academies of Sciences—the ARPA-E study was conducted at Congress' request, and the EPA STAR study was conducted at the EPA's own request