Obama's Wishful Cuts to Oil Tax Breaks: Hot off the Griddle

By Tom Randall

Good morning, and welcome back to the Griddle, a menu of fortified items for the busy person's media diet. President Barack Obama’s 2013 budget proposes $40 billion in cuts to fossil fuel credits. Sounds like a lot. The reductions would take place over the next decade, so it's really about $4 billion a year, or about 1 percent of oil & gas revenues. The subsidies are so convoluted, it's difficult to tell exactly how much the fossil fuel industries currently receive. The Environmental Law Institute found U.S. taxpayers chipped in more than $10 billion a year from 2002 to 2008. A Bloomberg New Energy Finance analysis in November showed world governments gave six times the subsidies to gasoline, coal and natural gas that they gave to wind, solar and biofuels. That came to $409 billion in fossil fuel subsidies to many of the world's most profitable companies. The generosity isn't likely to change in a divided U.S. Congress, in an election year.

And now the news:

Gore, Blood Liken CO2 Neglect to Subprime Debt (Bloomberg)
U.S. Will Lead New Effort to Cut Heat-Trapping Gases (Washington Post)
KPMG Says 'Hidden' Environmental Costs to Double Every 14 Years (GreenBiz)
Leak Offers Glimpse of Campaign Against Climate Science (NY Times)
Climate Science Attack Machine Took Donations From Major Corporations (Guardian)
Will Heartland Institute Scandal Force Transparency on Corporate Donors (GreenBiz)
U.S. May Hit Energy Independence This Decade (Bloomberg)
Xi's Iowa Dinner a Dietary Nightmare (Bloomberg)
Expired U.S. Tax Breaks May Stay in Limbo Past Election (Bloomberg)
Sempra, Xcel Lead Utility Sustainability Index (Environmental Leader)
Guandong Faces Uncertain Future as Factories Move Out (Harvard Business Review) 
Energy Independence Is Golden Chance to Develop Renewables: View (Bloomberg)

Visit www.bloomberg.com/sustainability for the latest from Bloomberg News about energy, natural resources and global business.

-0- Feb/16/2012 14:22 GMT