• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Obama's To-Do List: Clean Energy Over Taxmaggedon

    During a speech this week, President Obama presented Congress with a 5-point to-do list, which, as the President proudly proclaimed, would fit on a sticky note. When it comes to unleashing the economy and creating jobs, his suggestions are only worthy of a sticky note. It is particularly telling of the President’s priorities that he spoke up for renewing tax credits for his favored clean energy companies while making no mention of the monumental Taxmaggedon heading toward American businesses and families in 2013.

    The President remarked:

    …if Congress fails to act soon, clean energy companies will see their taxes go up and they could be forced to lay off employees…since I know that the other side in Congress have promised they’ll never raise taxes as long as they live, this is a good time to keep that promise when it comes to businesses that are putting Americans to work and helping break our dependence on foreign oil. So we should extend these tax credits.

    Yes, Congress and the President should absolutely get to work to avoid tax hikes on American businesses and families. Taxmaggedon would hit America with the force of a nearly $500 billion tax hike, which averages to $3,800 for every American family. But avoiding Taxmaggeddon did not make it onto the President’s sticky note. Instead, the President is calling on Congress to extend targeted tax credits such as the Wind Production Tax Credit and to expand the 30 percent tax credit to investments in clean energy manufacturing, which was part of the failed stimulus.

    The President claims that checking off the items on his to-do list would create jobs. That’s a particularly interesting claim with respect to the targeted tax incentives for clean energy. Not too long ago, a Spanish study demonstrated that more jobs are lost for every green job that government creates. As Heritage’s David Kreutzer points out, the largest estimates of the so-called green jobs put forth by the recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report are in very different industries than envisioned by many proponents of clean energy subsidies: “There are over 30 times as many green jobs servicing septic tanks and portable toilets as there are in the solar-electric utility industry.”

    Taxmaggeddon, which would be the largest tax hike in history by far, would have devastating impacts on American families and businesses. Congress should create certainty for American job creators today by swiftly averting Taxmaggedon. That would do much more to enable the American economy to grow and create jobs than any item on the President’s sticky note.

    With respect to incentives for energy industries, Congress should get rid of all targeted tax credits for the energy industry and offset the resulting tax hike with a broader reduction in tax rates, as a bill by Representative Mike Pompeo (R–KS) and Senator Jim DeMint (R–SC) would do.

    Posted in Energy, Featured [slideshow_deploy]

    7 Responses to Obama's To-Do List: Clean Energy Over Taxmaggedon

    1. Stirling says:

      Maybe this president can move to Spain (once the election is over), and try to resurect their Green Industry (again).. We've had enough of fairy tales and lollypops from this administration.. Pull the plug on Green and watch this country roar back and excell with proven technology.

    2. Chris in N.Va. says:

      Ahh….Post-It Notes, those ubiquitous testaments to government research and….

      Umm….let's try again.

      Those shining examples of what can be created by the infusion of billions of dollars of government grants and…

      Hmm…no, that's not right either.

      Once again, Ozymandias-on-the-Potomac demonstrates that his entire presidency and legacy is truly only fitting for Post-It Notes and bumper sticker campaign slogans.

      The Smartest Man In The Room reveals that primarily applies if he's alone in a phone booth.

    3. cemal adli says:

      Obama keeps saying;Forward;.I remember hearing what ;Forward;meant to the Socialists of 18th century including Karl Marx.I wonder could any member of Heritage Foundation's knowledgeable staff guide us to learn more about it?I believe we are being tried to push to that direction.

      • Bobbie says:

        Words that stimulate the individual thinker like "forward, progress, evolve, etc" are all code words setting the trap into 3rd world mentality! The only mentality those in Obama's public office and midst, have! See how easy it was to dummy down democrats! Very necessary to stay above that!

        Instead of inspiring intelligence in the world's individual minds to that of what America once inspired, Mr. Obama refused the American constitution because of his personal pathetic interpretation directly contrast and misinterpreted allowing himself to evolve abusive authority to create ignorant and dangerous positions to dummy down the world! Take note of the words and check the angles, this man's content of character shows what he's about! His background doesn't need to be told, he's already showed he's not man enough to tell and coward enough to hide as he knows his background and evolution is contrary to the nature of good will.

    4. Kevin@AWEA says:

      The energy industry has never participated in a truly free market. Federal loan guarantees, the Price-Anderson Act that limits nuclear reactor insurance costs and long-standing subsidies for mature industries like oil, coal and natural gas are just several examples of how the U.S. energy industry is supported in ways that favor traditional energy production. The wind industry could compete in a truly free market, but such an energy market simply does not exist in America and never has.

      Rep. Pompeo claims that the bill he introduced eliminates all energy tax breaks, but anyone who has actually read the bill will find that it does no such thing. In fact, Rep. Pompeo’s bill only cuts two subsidies that are not even being used (read: doesn’t save the taxpayers a dime). But don’t take our word for it–data from the American Petroleum Institute (API) shows the Pompeo bill would do nothing to stop the continued handout of over $35 billion to big oil and gas.*

      As a business tax credit, the wind Production Tax Credit (PTC) is based solely on project performance, not evaluation by government officials. Furthermore, the PTC is an effective tool to allow developers to raise private capital in the marketplace and bring renewable energy projects to completion. It has been highly successful in this capacity, as the wind industry has attracted over $70 billion of investment since 2005. This investment now supports more than 470 manufacturing facilities and over 75,000 American jobs across a booming industry.

      Legislation extending the PTC now has 97 co-sponsors including 21 Republicans and 14 members of the Ways and Means committee (4 of which are Republicans). Why the bipartisan support? It’s simple. The PTC is strong, economically advantageous public policy that is proven to create domestic jobs, lower electricity costs and help rebuild a strong manufacturing industry across America. Wind energy is an American success story – the case for continuing to invest in it is very strong.

      *Click here for the data from API (Page 17): http://www.api.org/Newsroom/upload/SOAE_Wood_Mack

    5. Jimmy says:

      Why has't the Heritage Foundation come out against the 48A Clean Coal Tax credits that Southern Co has received? In Southern latest 10Q, it says that they received $412 million of tax credits for one single plant… In the interest of honesty, Heritage should highlight this tax credit cost as well.

    6. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      AKA, doubling down on stupid.

    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.