The Five Most Pro-Polluter Planks in Romney’s Energy Plan
Earlier today, Mitt Romney rolled out a few additional details about his oil above all energy plan. Here’s what you need to know about Romney’s of, by, and for Big Oil energy plan.
1. The Romney-Ryan plan gives the big five oil companies a $2.3 billion tax cut above and beyond existing tax loopholes
Both Romney’s plan and the House-passed Ryan budget would retain $2.4 billion in annual tax breaks for the big five oil companies – BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, and Shell – that made a record $137 billion in profits last year, and over $60 billion so far in 2012. Perhaps more outrageous is that the Romney-Ryan proposed cut in the corporate tax rate would provide a $2.3 billion tax cut for the big five oil companies. With the existing tax breaks, the big five companies would skim over $4 billion annually from the U.S. Treasury.
2. Romney plan gives Americans’ lands and waters to dirty energy interests
Romney also proposes the extreme idea of giving states control over energy development on America’s public lands. This is a misguided proposal that would end the tradition of managing lands that belong to the entire country for the wide array of resource values to “meet the present and future needs of the American people.” Instead, on a state by state basis these unparalleled national assets – including national parks – could be turned over to energy companies, making energy development the primary use of the land, at the expense of grazing, hunting, fishing, and all other forms of recreation. A similar proposal was too radical even for arch conservative Arizona Governor Jan Brewer. She vetoed a bill turning all federal lands over to her state.
3. Romney and Ryan would cede clean energy innovation, exports to China, Germany, other nations. They outsource energy jobs to our greatest competitors.
The worldwide market for clean energy technologies will be $2 trillion by 2020. Yet Romney and Ryan would cede this market to other nations by opposing incentives to help emerging technologies grow to scale. Romney and Ryan oppose the extension of the Production Tax Credit to encourage wind energy. The PTC helped the U.S. double its wind electricity generation over the past four years, and ending it could cost at least 37,000 jobs this year.
An American Wind Energy Association analysis predicts that New Mexico and Texas could lose up to 5,000 and 20,000 jobs, respectively, if the PTC expires.
4. Romney plan won’t reduce oil and gasoline prices
Romney falsely claims that his energy plan will “lower energy prices.” Oil prices are set on the global market, regardless of domestic production. Even oil independent nations such as Canada experienced high gasoline prices this year. The Wall Street Journal reiterated that “Producing a lot of oil doesn’t lower the price of gasoline in your country.” To determine whether domestic oil production lowers gasoline prices, the Associated Press analyzed 30 years of production and price data. AP determined that there is:
“No statistical correlation between how much oil comes out of U.S. wells and the price at the pump.”
5. Romney and Ryan support continuing mercury contamination from power plants
The Obama administration issued overdue reduction standards for mercury and cancer causing pollution from power plants. The standard saves thousands of lives of children, seniors and other vulnerable people. Yet Romney promises to undo it on his very first day in office by issuing an executive order that
“Directs all agencies to immediately initiate the elimination of Obama-era regulations that unduly burden the economy or job creation.”
The Mercury and Air Toxics Standard will produce “$3 to $9 in health benefits” for every dollar in pollution reduction costs, according to EPA.
This corporate polluter agenda should come as no surprise, as the Washington Post noted:
“Romney’s plan caters heavily to oil and coal interests, and oil executives are some of his biggest benefactors.”
Romney’s energy team is comprised of oil and coal industry insiders, from oil billionaire Harold Hamm, the chair of Romney’s energy policy team – and $1 million donor to the conservative Restore Our Future Super PAC — to coal lobbyist Jim Talent, as well as retreads from the George W. Bush administration. Politico described it as “Bush energy advisors going to Romney.”
The Romney-Ryan plan once again claims mysterious “trillions” of dollars in government revenue; however, a recent Congressional Budget Office analysis found that their proposals would bring in only limited federal revenues over the next decade. Instead, the Romney-Ryan energy plan includes billions of dollars of tax breaks to corporate polluter allies, access to lands and waters owned by all Americans, and fewer restrictions on mercury, toxic, and carbon pollution.
Completely absent from Romney’s plan? Any mention whatsoever of either global warming or climate change.
BOTTOM LINE: Romney’s plan means more handouts to polluters at the expense of the rest of us and our clean air, water, and public lands.
Evening Brief: Important Stories That You May Have Missed
An Iowa story: how Romney’s opposition to wind energy tax credit could become a political liability.
GOP Rep. Tipton (CO) says we can’t acknowledge man-made global warming because it would “divide the country.”
Paul Ryan held an event today solely to bash automatic defense spending cuts, which Ryan himself voted for just last year.
Fox News honored the troops today by revealing the name of the Navy Seal who lead the bin Laden raid.
Gawker published 950 pages of documents about Romney’s secretive investments in the Cayman Islands.
New Hampshire sheriff candidate says he’d use deadly force to stop abortions.
Mitt Romney told the anti-abortion doctor behind Akin’s “legitimate rape” claim that “we agree on almost everything.”
Even a Republican oil billionaire says Romney’s energy plan is too focused on oil.
The Romney plan would raises taxes on the middle class in order to pay for a massive new corporate tax cut.