Energy Giveaways--To Those Who Need It Least
(FORTUNE Magazine) – The energy bill that recently sailed through Congress not only neglected to raise mileage standards (the most effective way to nudge Detroit to make more fuel-efficient cars) but contained an outrageous array of oil-drenched handouts to some of the least deserving cases.
Score another one for Toyota. The Japanese giant is already years ahead of U.S. automakers on hybrids (Toyota owns 64% of the market), so it will reap much of the near-term benefit from the hybrid tax credit (60,000 buyers will each get a credit of around $3,000). And its new hybrid SUVs are pretty thirsty.
With oil prices above $60 per barrel, companies like Exxon Mobil have so much cash on hand (Exxon had $25.6 billion at last count) they can't spend it. Nonetheless the industry secured $3.6 billion to find new petroleum and a $2.8 billion tax break for oil and gas.
Archer Daniels Midland
The provision forcing oil refiners to use eight billion gallons more ethanol a year by 2012 will be a windfall for ADM, the nation's largest producer of the additive (the 51-cent-a-gallon tax rebate on ethanol was also extended). Isn't it nice to have friends in high places?