Midwest In Center Of Energy Bill Tax Incentives

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont) is considering tax incentives for the energy bill being debated on the Senate floor this week. Vehicles and coal, Midwest staples, are front and center. Fuel economiy standards and coal-to-liquids are getting lobbied from supporters and opponents, along with other clean energy proposals. Automakers want to weaken proposla to significantly increase Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. The legislation proposes about 46 mpg, automakers say they 'could' do 'maybe' 36 mpg and AAEA wants about 40 mpg.

The Coal to Liquids Coalition, a consortium of coal producers, unions, airlines and railroads, wants $200 million in investment tax credits to help in building 12 coal-to-liquid (CTL) refineries. AAEA supports coal-to-liquids mostly for military use, although we want CO2 sequestration from these plants and we support Senator Barck Obama's legislation (notwithstanding his clarification). AAEA also believes CTL producers should be required to finance nuclear plants, solar power and wind turbines as carbon dioxide offsets.

The total energy bill tax incentives package for cleaner energy sources, ethanol, animal fat diesel, CTL, fuel economy standards and more will be about $14 billion over 10 years. (The Wall Street Journal, 6-18-07)

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