Today, the Science and Technology Action Committee issued a statement in response to the DOE announcement that for the first time researchers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory produced more energy from fusion than was used to drive it — a major scientific breakthrough that could pave the way for advancements in national defense and clean power.
The announcement this week by the Department of Energy of an energy positive fusion reaction represents a milestone in the fight against climate change — one that also illustrates the power of large-scale federal investment in R&D.
This remarkable American breakthrough is the result of a uniquely America competitive advantage — our 17 federally funded national laboratories. It is only through decades of federal investment in R&D, particularly in basic research, and a culture of collaboration and partnerships that a discovery like this is even possible.
While massive challenges still exist and commercialization is decades away, fusion power’s promise is unmatched in overcoming many of society’s greatest challenges. And if the U.S. can commercialize fusion energy production, the economic, national security and quality of life benefits for every American will be great.
This discovery is just one example of why long-term federal investment in R&D is critical. In the coming decades, similar cutting-edge discoveries are possible in health care, advanced computing, food production and other vital areas. But only if the federal government invests now.