"Top Energy Department officials have been taking some pricey trips lately, thanks to outside groups helping to fund their travel to destinations like Bermuda, Taipei, Tokyo, Brussels and New Delhi.
Obama administration DOE officials have taken more than 300 trips since April 2011 that were funded with help from outside groups with the department accepting more than $700,000 for official travel, according to a Greenwire review of agency documents. That includes more than 20 trips with price tags upward of $5,000.
Like other agencies, DOE has accepted gifts from outside groups to fund employees' trips to speak at and attend conferences, take tours of facilities and new projects, and present DOE's work. Sponsors have included influential industry trade groups, foreign governments, universities, nonprofits and other outsiders."