Congress Moves Forward with Anti-Energy Plan
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<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Washington, D.C., December 5, 2007—The Democratic leadership in the House of Representatives is poised this week to push forward an energy bill that would reduce affordable energy supplies, increase prices on a broad range of consumer goods, put Americans drivers at risk, and push manufacturing jobs overseas.
“Recent polls have shown that rising energy prices are one of the top issues worrying Americans across the board,” said Myron Ebell, Director of Energy Policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. “It seems strange, then, that the only major piece of energy legislation making its way through Congress is one guaranteed to increase prices even more.”
The energy bill includes an array of mandates, subsidies and regulations, virtually all of which will increase fuel and electricity costs. Consumers would also pay for policies like ethanol mandates and renewable energy requirements a second time when food producers and manufacturers pass on their cost increases. Given that less affluent families spend a disproportionate amount of their household income on basics like electricity and food, the proposed policies will amount to a highly regressive tax on the poorest Americans.
“American families, unfortunately, will have little choice but to pay more for basic necessities if this bill becomes law,” said Ebell. “U.S. companies, however, will face the obvious alternative – moving operations overseas. There are few things that would put more pressure on companies to export well-paying manufacturing jobs than passing the current energy bill.”
The bill also includes a major increase in government-mandated fuel economy standards, which will only make one of America’s deadliest regulations even deadlier.
“There is overwhelming evidence that, even at current levels, Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards increase traffic deaths by restricting the size and weight of vehicles. Like a regulatory noose, those restrictions will now get even tighter,” said Sam Kazman, CEI’s general counsel.
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