This bill sells offshore drilling leases and funnels the proceeds into clean energy infrastructure.
Over 20 years it would generate between $2.2 and $3.7 trillion worth of revenue for the US government through leases and production royalties from offshore oil leases.
That money would fund a variety of priorities, including infrastructure, renewable energy and deficit reduction.
Full name: Infrastructure Jobs and Energy Independence Act
This is from Minnesota Public Radio...
"Spending nearly a half a trillion dollars a year to countries that hate us is insane. They will hate us for free," Walz said. "We can keep the jobs at home. We can create those jobs that make good living wages and we can start moving on to energy independence."
Republicans touted the measure as a way to avoid raising taxes while demonstrating a willingness to fund alternative energy and transportation projects.
"This legislation would not only increase domestic exploration, but would also invest in clean American energy and our aging infrastructure," said Rep. Erik Paulsen.
But the bill does face hurdles.
There are currently no co-sponsors from the Gulf Coast, which would see offshore drilling expand and which is still recovering from last year's BP oil spill.
Also, none of the bipartisan group's members could say whether Congressional leadership will push the bill along.
[Editor Note: This is similar to The All Energy Jobs Act 3.2.1 which swaps subsidies to the Oil industry for a Green Bank to fund projects with specific payback periods, spreading the risk over the stakeholders.]
I am not naive; we will not end our dependence on oil overnight. But neither should we delay the process of weaning our addiction (already started.)
Eliminate oil subsidies and as oil becomes scarcer and scarcer markets will react with research and investment in energy and transportation alternatives to fill the gap.
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