Congress is set to pass a budget doubling down on a years-long trend of increasing clean-energy funding, despite President Trump's repeated attempts to cut spending.

Driving the news: The spending bill the House passed on Tuesday would increase energy research spending nearly 14% compared to this year’s levels and more than 50% compared to 2014.

Why it matters: Federal research and development is a key part of scaling up and making affordable technologies needed to cut greenhouse gas emissions, such as advanced nuclear power and new innovations with solar and wind energy.

The big picture: Democrats, most environmentalists and more and more companies are calling for sweeping government policies, such as prices on carbon dioxide emissions or mandates requiring 100% carbon-free energy. But as debate on those fronts stalls over deep partisan divides, lawmakers — led by Republicans in recent years — have agreed on ramping up research spending.

What they’re saying: The ClearPath Foundation, a conservative clean-energy nonprofit that put together the below budget numbers for Axios, maintains that those big policies aren’t politically feasible. That’s a position shared by many congressional Republicans who are worried about higher energy prices and blowback from far-right advocacy groups.

  • “We think the route is to make clean energy cheaper, not traditional energy more expensive,” said Rich Powell, ClearPath’s executive director.
Expand chart
Data: Congressional Record via ClearPath Foundation; Chart: Axios Visuals

By the numbers: The accompanying chart shows how five key areas within the Energy Department focusing on energy research saw increases since fiscal year 2014, according to federal data compiled by ClearPath.

  • The fiscal year 2020 budget includes a total of $5.5 billion for these areas. This excludes the office of science, which has a far larger budget than these others, but isn’t necessarily focused on energy innovation.
  • Combined, these five areas saw an increase of 51%, or $1.86 billion, between fiscal years 2014 and 2020.
  • Energy storage technology, within the electricity office, saw the biggest percent increase, but has the smallest budget ($56 million in the latest budget). This chart includes just energy storage, given the overall electricity office has a broader focus and could include the Energy Department’s failed efforts in 2017 to bail out economically struggling coal and nuclear plants.
  • From an absolute numbers perspective, the biggest budgets are for the offices of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy ($2.79 billion in fiscal year 2020) and Nuclear Energy ($1.5 billion).

Flashback: Congress has passed these increases despite the Trump administration's budget proposals that regularly suggest slashing spending — and sometimes eliminate certain energy research projects altogether.

Yes, but: R&D spending is just one part of a policy agenda pushing clean energy. In other areas, Congress was less supportive. Lawmakers are unlikely to extend several tax incentives for certain technologies, including storage and solar.

What we’re watching: Democratic presidential candidates are calling for far greater federal funding in clean energy, which will largely mean the Energy Department. Joe Biden’s climate plan, for example, includes an estimated $40 billion a year in such investments.

Go deeper: Why clean energy isn’t enough to tackle climate change

Go deeper

Democrats demand Trump release his tax returns after NYT report

Compilation images of House Nancy Pelosi and President Trump. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Democrats called on President Trump to disclose his tax returns following a New York Times report alleging he paid $750 in federal income taxes in 2016 and 2017 and nothing in 10 of the past 15 years.

Details: Trump said the report was "total fake news," that he's unable to release the returns as they're "under audit" by the IRS, "which does not treat me well." House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said in a statement the report "provides further evidence of the clear need" for a House lawsuit to access the tax returns and "ensure the presidential audit program is functioning effectively, without improper influence."

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Former Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale hospitalized

Brad Parscale, the former campaign manager for President Trump's re-election campaign, at Drake University in January in Des Moines, Iowa. Photo: Tom Brenner/Getty Images

Fort Lauderdale police arrived at former Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale's home on Sunday after his wife called and said he was threatening to harm himself, Florida officials confirmed to Axios.

Details: Fort Lauderdale Police Sgt. DeAnna Greenlaw told Axios officers responded to a report of "an armed male attempting suicide" just before 4 p.m. local time.

Updated 3 hours ago - Science

California wine country wildfire prompts evacuations

The scene of the Glass Fire in St. Helena, in Napa County, California, on Sunday. Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP via Getty Images

Firefighters in the western U.S. were facing "critical fire weather conditions," as a rapidly spreading new wildfire in Northern California prompted fresh evacuations Sunday.

Why it matters: Wildfires have burned a record 3.6 million acres in California this year, killing 26 people and razing over 7,600 structures, per Cal Fire. Utility provider Pacific Gas & Electric cut power to 11,000 customers early Sunday and planned outages for 54,000 others later in the day because of fire risks.