Environment Local News

When the Congressional super-committee sits down to cut the nation’s spending, everything is fair game. But a new report released by four non-profit groups suggests the panel look first to cutting energy subsidies.

The report is called Green Scissors, and it was released today by groups that promote free market capitalism, consumer protections, the environment, or fiscal responsibility. It highlights the $380 billion in spending that goes to subsidize oil, gas and coal, as well as tax breaks and government loans.

Steve Ellis is the Vice President of Taxpayers for Common Sense, which helped write the report.

“You know, we can cut wasteful spending that also harms the environment,” he said. “So in some cases, it’s things like tax breaks for the oil and gas industry or loan guarantees for nuclear power or some of the direct subsidies that go into alternative energy sources.”

Ellis says so-called clean coal technology gets a lot of hand-outs.

“There is a tax credit that would be almost a billion dollars over five years for carbon capture and sequestration, there’s a credit for investment in clean coal facilities, so we’ve got a bunch of different duplicative programs that are trying to encourage the investment in clean coal technology,” he said.

Ellis adds that the technology is unproven, and is wasteful taxpayer spending.