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Bob Card Leaves USDOE April 18
April 8, 2004
In a surprise move, the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) announced that
UnderSecretary of Energy Robert Card will leave the department April 18.
Card had recently been very visible on "The Hill," testifying before
Congressional committees on the USDOE's Fiscal Year 2005 budget requests.
Card also chaired the U.S delegation to
December 20, 2003 "ministerial meeting" which was
unable to reach agreement on a site for the ITER international fusion
engineering test reactor project. With his industrial and engineering
background, Card also had been a modest counterbalance to the
Administration's penchant for casting the U.S. fusion effort as a "science"
program with no engineering development component. The U.S. government
currently views ITER as a "burning plasma physics experiment," whereas the
other ITER Parties (Europe, Russia, China, Korea and Japan) view ITER
primarily as a fusion engineering test reactor stepping stone to a fusion
In a statement, Card said "I had planned from the beginning to serve the
full term, but pressing family issues overtook my plans early this year."
The USDOE also announced that David Conover will take over Card's
responsibilities for DOE's "climate change portfolio." Conover, who is
Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of the Secretary of Energy, recently
participated in an "Energy Options for the Future" meeting at the U.S.
Naval Research Laboratory. In his talk, Conover indicated that fusion was
an important part of the USDOE's long range plan for dealing with climate
change. The Office of Management and Budget reportedly asked Conover to
remove fusion from his list of climate change technologies, citing that
fusion was just a science program. Conover reportedly refused to do this.
The role of fusion in the US climate change portfolio is posted at