Growth Energy: Country is Ready to End Subsidies to Oil

WASHINGTON – Following remarks by President Obama today that challenged the logic behind taxpayer subsidies of the oil industry, Growth Energy weighed in with a statement noting that U.S. ethanol had agreed to forego its major subsidy nearly two years ago.

“The oil companies are enjoying deep taxpayer subsidies despite that industry’s historic profits and near-monopoly-control of the motor fuels market,” said Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy, who attended today’s Rose Garden remarks by the President.

“We agree it’s time for all energy industries to compete on a level playing field. That’s why our industry came to the table two years ago with a plan to wind down our subsidies in exchange for market access. It’s time for the oil companies to do the same,” Buis said. “And we agree with the President that if taxpayers are going to invest in anything, it should be clean energy, like ethanol. American ethanol creates U.S. jobs, is proven to reduce emissions, and strengthens our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign oil.”

High oil prices continue to drain billions from American pocketbooks with every jump in costs at the gasoline pump. At the same time, as President Obama pointed out in his remarks today: “…on top of these record profits, oil companies are also getting billions a year in taxpayer subsidies – a subsidy they’ve enjoyed year after year for the last century.”

In his remarks, the President outlined a plan that would increase the investments in clean energy while maintaining support for production of oil and gas in the United States, a plan which Obama called his “all of the above” energy strategy.

Buis said: “Growth Energy agrees with an all-of-the-above strategy, because when we can compete against foreign oil, we can beat foreign oil. Ethanol today is trading at more than a buck-a-gallon cheaper than the cheapest form of gasoline out there, meaning the more ethanol we pump, the lower the price at the filling station. Roll in our domestic job creation, the fact that ethanol is a proven smog-cutter, and that is fosters energy independence, and we beat oil hands down.”