• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Energy Bills Without Any Energy

    The problem with too many of Washington’s energy bills is that the only energy they contain is in the title. That was the case with the 2005 and 2007 energy bills, which in case anyone had not noticed have yet to do any good. And the same is true of the so-called Gang of Ten Senate proposal and similar measures under discussion in the House.

    The most obvious first step in dealing with high energy prices is to make available the significant amounts of domestic oil and natural gas that inexplicably remain off limits. But the 2005 and 2007 bills did nothing to repeal the restrictions on 85 percent of our offshore areas and promising onshore sites like ANWR. Similarly, the Gang of Ten bill offers only a fig leaf of a few new offshore areas that may be opened up, but leaves nearly all the untapped energy potential off limits, and in fact strengthens the restrictions on those areas.

    Energy bills also act as environmental bills in disguise. Mandates and incentives for environmentally-correct alternative fuels and vehicles abound in both the 2005 and 2007 bills. But the only reason these green alternatives need federal handouts is that they are too expensive to compete otherwise. The same is true for the Gang of Ten. But alternatives that raise the cost of energy are the last thing the American people want right now.

    Energy bills are also vehicles for pork. The 2005 and 2007 bills contained a mandate for using ethanol that is highly praised by corn farmers and their benefactors in Washington, but few others. Similarly, the Gang of Ten bill contains big giveaways to the auto industry among others, as well as more handouts for ethanol and other biofuels.

    Energy bills should have actual energy in them, and judging by this measure, the Gang of Ten bill would be the third energy bill in four years to fail the test.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    3 Responses to Energy Bills Without Any Energy

    1. Thomas Gray, South C says:

      The US energy supplys are locked up by the environmentalist,,,,,It's magic,,,,,wrong, It's insanity.

      My children in maine can't pay the oil bill from last year what do these people think about my vote???

      solor and wind does not work in maine in the winter.

      guess how I'm going to vote…………………………

      Maine, which received $38 million last year from the federal government, would need $70 million just to deliver the same benefit in light of rising fuel prices, said Jo-Ann Choate, the manager of energy and housing services for the Maine State Housing Authority.

      "This is a real crisis for the Northeast," she said.

      Choate said many residents are carrying a past-due balance from last winter's bills.

    2. Andrew says:

      Another obvious drawback of the new “Gang of Ten” proposal is that the Section 199 revenue provisions alone would represent a $13.5 billion corporate tax increase, costing thousands of U.S. jobs:

      http://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/2008/09/10/gang-of-sixteen/

    3. Donna Crowe, Atlanta says:

      I am blown away by the fact that we have in place right now an alternative to gasoline that is produced in America and has been proven to be cost effective and safer for our enviroment that has been used since 1913 and no one is talking about it! It is LPG Liquid Propane Gas. The real beauty is that you can switch back and fourth with the flip of a switch. Europe and other countries are widely using it. What is wrong with us. We just don't get or maybe we do and its more important to some of us to keep pouring money into these foreign countries!

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×