With the November elections just over a week away, energy issues continue to make headlines on the campaign trail and play a central role in the lame duck negotiation preparations.
President Obama’s campaign released a document October 23 outlining his jobs plan for a second term. Among other things, the Plan for Jobs and Middle-Class Security renews the president’s call for an 80 percent clean energy standard by 2035 and encourages Congress to renew the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit. It also applauds the new fuel economy standards, a $5 billion investment in clean coal research, and increased natural gas, oil, and renewable energy production. The president’s energy plan is part of a goal to reduce net oil imports in half by 2020.
In anticipation of the lame duck session, policymakers continue to debate the inclusion various tax extenders measures into a larger fiscal cliff package. The Investor Network on Climate Risk sent a letter to House and Senate leadership last week urging Congress to extend the production tax credit, saying that allowing it to expire would significantly harm U.S. competitiveness and send hundreds of billions in investment dollars to other countries. Other potential energy-related items on the end of the year agenda include energy efficiency legislation, Defense reauthorization, which includes the Navy’s use of biofuels, and the Farm bill.