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Rahm Emanuel on Energy & Oil

Democratic Rep. (IL-5); Chief of Staff-Designee


Usher in a Hybrid Economy in American cars

We should break our oil habit and save our auto industry in the bargain by ushering in a Hybrid Economy that can cut America's gasoline consumption in half over the next decade. Detroit is on the ropes for a host of reasons. But the biggest looming threat to its survival may be Japan's massive lead in developing hybrid-powered engines. Toyota plans to sell a million hybrids a year by early in the next decade. Ford didn't even introduce a hybrid vehicle until 2005, years after the Toyota Prius and the Honda Insight. GM is still developing its first fully hybrid vehicle. This isn't the first time Japan has taught Japan a lesson. In the early 1980s, US automakers were in dire straits for the same reason: while Ford and GM were still peddling gas-guzzling Lincolns and Buicks, fuel-efficient Hondas and Toyotas stole a big share of the American market from under their noses.
Source: The Plan, by Rahm Emanuel, p.163-164 , Jan 5, 2009

Backing away from Kyoto was policy error & economic error

Backing away from the Kyoto agreement on climate change was not only a foreign policy blunder, but an economic one. A climate change agreement would force the US to adopt a real energy plan, and to seize the lead in development of energy-efficient technologies. Energy efficiency can enable our economy to keep growing, even as we begin to curb our contribution to climate change. For example, the average efficiency of America's 10,000 electric power plants--33%--hasn't improved since 1960. Transmission losses on power lines have doubled since 1970. Distributed energy systems like solar and wind power have the potential to achieve efficiencies as high as 90%.
Source: The Plan, by Rahm Emanuel, p.165-166 , Jan 5, 2009

Voted YES on tax credits for renewable electricity, with PAYGO offsets.

Congressional Summary:Extends the tax credit for producing electricity from renewable resources:

Proponent's argument to vote Yes: Rep. RICHARD NEAL (D, MA-2): This bill contains extensions of popular tax incentives that expired at the end of last year. This needs to get under way. The R&D tax credit is important. This bill includes a number of popular and forward-thinking incentives for energy efficiency. This is a very balanced bill which does no harm to the Federal Treasury. It asks that hedge fund managers pay a bit more, and it delays an international tax break that hasn't gone into effect yet. It is responsible legislation.

Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. DAVE CAMP (R, MI-4): We are conducting another purely political exercise on a tax bill that is doomed in the other body because of our House majority's insistence on adhering to the misguided PAYGO rules. The Senate acted on a bipartisan basis to find common ground on this issue. They approved a comprehensive tax relief package containing extenders provisions that are not fully offset, as many Democrats would prefer, but contain more offsets than Republicans would like. Why is this our only option? Because the Senate, which has labored long and hard to develop that compromise, has indicated in no uncertain terms that it is not going to reconsider these issues again this year.

[The bill was killed in the Senate].

Reference: Renewable Energy and Job Creation Tax Act; Bill H.R.7060 ; vote number 2008-H649 on Sep 26, 2008

Voted YES on tax incentives for energy production and conservation.

OnTheIssues.org Explanation: This bill passed the House but was killed in the Senate on a rejected Cloture Motion, Senate rollcall #150

Congressional Summary: A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide Tax incentives for energy production and conservation, to extend certain expiring provisions, and to provide individual income tax relief.