Washington, D.C., June 26, 2007—Tomorrow the House Energy and Commerce Committee will meet to markup an energy bill containing several controversial provisions. Members are poised to debate proposals including an expanded alternative fuels mandate, higher fuel efficiency (CAFE) standards for new vehicles and the use of coal for liquid fuel.
“The mandate for alternative fuels – mostly ethanol made from corn – is an odd choice for an energy reform package, particularly at a time when many House members are complaining about the impact of high gas prices on consumers. What is being proposed will raise auto fuel prices significantly.” said Myron Ebell, Director of Energy Policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. “Rather than blaming oil companies, Members of Congress should start looking at the government policies they are proposing that would make energy from all sources more expensive.”
The leadership in the House of Representative continues to push both expanded ethanol use and increasingly stringent fuel economy standards for new cars, despite considerable evidence of the negative consequences of both. Dramatically expanding ethanol production would raise food prices nationwide and pull large amounts of undeveloped field and forest land into agricultural production. CAFE standards produce lighter, less crashworthy cars, contributing to thousands of additional highway fatalities a year.
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