Barack Obama's administration has proposed a $3.99 trillion budget that includes $4bn for green energy and $14bn for cyber security reinforcement

Tackling emissions and cyber threat priorities of Obama's budget

The $3.99 trillion 2016 budget proposal of the US President Barack Obama, announced on Monday, includes $14bn for cyber-security as well as a new $4bn fund to facilitate the US transition to cleaner energy.

While the cyber-security spending, aiming to reinforce the protection of federal as well as private networks against the growing danger of cyber-attacks, has increased by 12 per cent compared with the previous year, the investment into clean energy will see a 7 per cent boost, if the budget is approved.

Among the cyber-security programmes proposed for funding is monitoring and diagnostics of federal computer networks, the EINSTEIN intrusion detection and prevention system and government-wide testing and incident-response training.

"Cyber threats targeting the private sector, critical infrastructure and the federal government demonstrate that no sector, network or system is immune to infiltration by those seeking to steal commercial or government secrets and property or perpetrate malicious and disruptive activity," the White House summary said.

The White House proposes building a $227m Civilian Cyber Campus, meant to spur public-private partnerships, and $160m for information technology and cybersecurity of the weapons program at the Energy Department's National Nuclear Security Administration.

The Pentagon's budget alone called for $5.5bn in funding for cybersecurity. The agency's chief weapons tester last month told Congress that nearly every US weapons program showed ‘significant vulnerabilities’ to cyber-attacks, including misconfigured, unpatched and outdated software.

Reflecting Obama’s pledge to make fighting climate change a top priority of his final two years in office, the budget calls for a set of measures to facilitate the US transition towards renewable energy.

The proposed $4bn investment in clean energy technologies would cover programmes primarily administered through the departments of Energy and Defense.

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, states would be able to apply for funding to cover projects designed to slash carbon footprint and reduce pollution mostly from power plants.

Obama’s administration is also proposing a permanent extension of the Production Tax Credit, used by the wind industry, and the Investment Tax Credit, used by the solar industry, the officials said.

To support the international component of Obama's climate strategy, the budget requests $500m to support the United Nations' Green Climate Fund, the first tranche of the $3bn pledged by the United States in November to help poor countries deal with climate change.

However, it is expected the budget proposal will be met with resistance in the Republican dominated congress.

The $3.99 trilion budget proposal foresees a $474bn deficit, which is 2.5 per cent of US gross domestic product, a level economists view as sustainable.

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