The United States Congress prepares to consider a major energy bill later this summer, and some lawmakers have suggested paying for new programs through higher taxes on oil and natural gas companies. However, the American Petroleum Institute (API) has criticized the idea, saying it would further imperil an already weak economic recovery.
Proponents of new taxes on these industries have been partially prompted by the ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, but API says the traditional energy sector supports 9.2 million jobs and adds 7.5 percent to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP). As a result, the organization believes new taxes could have a devastating impact on jobs, economic recovery and America’s energy security.
To further spread its message the trade association is running an ad campaign in several states, including Colorado, Michigan, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Virginia that began on July 6.
“The ads are part of the national debate on energy and tax policy. We hope they will help ensure decisions affecting our economic and energy security are not made in a vacuum or based on incomplete information,” said Jack Gerard, president and CEO of the API.
He added that “Americans have historically been suspicious of taxes on the industry that produces most of the energy they consume.”