Major Management Challenges and Program Risks:

Department of Energy

GAO-03-100: Published: Jan 1, 2003. Publicly Released: Jan 1, 2003.

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In its 2001 performance and accountability report on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), GAO identified important issues facing the department as it works to carry out its multiple, complex, and highly diverse missions. The information GAO presents in this report is intended to help to sustain congressional attention on these challenges and a departmental focus on continuing to make progress in addressing these challenges and ultimately overcoming them. The report should help improve government for the benefit of the American public. This report is part of a special series of governmentwide and agency specific issues.

DOE has taken steps to address the specific performance and management challenges that we previously identified. However, each of these challenges requires more work and vigilance to be overcome. In addition, the agency must face emerging challenges to meet the nation's energy needs and upgrade DOE's deteriorating infrastructure. Address security threats and problems: DOE has upgraded its physical, cyber and document security. However, the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, changed the threat that DOE had planned for and will likely require new security measures and additional resources. Improve management of the nation's nuclear weapons stockpile: The National Nuclear Security Administration, an agency within DOE, continues to develop its new planning, programming, and budgeting system and redesign its organization. However, both activities are far from complete and will need continued executive leadership to ensure that these major changes are effectively implemented. Resolve problems in contract management that place DOE at high risk for fraud, waste, and abuse: DOE has made progress in implementing contract reforms by using alternative contract types, competing more contracts, and using performance-based requirements. However, it is unclear whether these reforms have improved contractor performance. To better ensure the effectiveness of its initiatives, DOE must establish clear goals, results-oriented outcome measures, and performance data. Improve management for cleanup of DOE radioactive and hazardous wastes: DOE's environmental management program has begun initiatives to improve contract management, streamline business practices, and increase the technical expertise of DOE staff. However, continued management leadership is needed to ensure that these initiatives are implemented in a safe manner to accomplish program goals of accelerating risk reduction and reducing overall cleanup costs. Enhance DOE leadership in meeting the nation's energy needs: Our nation's energy supply system is under stress and is a potential terrorist target. Enhanced DOE leadership is needed to research new energy technologies, help develop a competitive electricity generation system, and reduce the vulnerability of the U.S. economy to supply disruptions of petroleum. Revitalize DOE's infrastructure: DOE has a new program to spend billions of dollars to upgrade its production facilities, research and development laboratories, and other infrastructure. DOE needs to ensure that these major projects are managed effectively and efficiently.

Below are the reports in this series:

High-Risk Series: An Update GAO-03-119, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Strategic Human Capital Management GAO-03-120, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Protecting Information Systems Supporting the Federal Government and the Nation's Critical Infrastructures GAO-03-121, Jan 1, 2003

High-Risk Series: Federal Real Property GAO-03-122, Jan 1, 2003

Added later:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Single-Employer Insurance Program: Long-Term Vulnerabilities Warrant 'High Risk' Designation GAO-03-1050SP, Jul 23, 2003

Performance and Accountability Series:

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: A Governmentwide Perspective GAO-03-95, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Agriculture GAO-03-96, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Commerce GAO-03-97, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Defense GAO-03-98, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Education GAO-03-99, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Energy GAO-03-100, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Health and Human Services GAO-03-101, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Homeland Security GAO-03-102, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Housing and Urban Development GAO-03-103, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of the Interior GAO-03-104, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Justice GAO-03-105, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Labor GAO-03-106, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of State GAO-03-107, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Transportation GAO-03-108, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of the Treasury GAO-03-109, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Department of Veterans Affairs GAO-03-110, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: U.S. Agency for International Development GAO-03-111, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Environmental Protection Agency GAO-03-112, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Federal Emergency Management Agency GAO-03-113, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: National Aeronautics and Space Administration GAO-03-114, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Office of Personnel Management GAO-03-115, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Small Business Administration GAO-03-116, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: Social Security Administration GAO-03-117, Jan 1, 2003

Major Management Challenges and Program Risks: U.S. Postal Service GAO-03-118, Jan 1, 2003

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