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Rep. Baca Backs Plan to Invest in Renewable Energy, Create New Jobs

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Bill Will Cut Tax Breaks to Big Oil, Curb Global Warming

Rep. Joe Baca (D-Rialto) today backed landmark legislation that will make significant new investments in renewable energy sources, create hundreds of thousands of new jobs, help end our dependence on foreign oil and slash taxpayer funded subsidies to oil companies. The Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act of 2008 was approved in the House of Representatives by a vote of 236-182.

"With oil prices reaching another record high of $102 per barrel today and families paying an average of $3.15 a gallon for gasoline, the time for action on renewable energy and American energy independence is long overdue," said Rep. Baca. "Ending our dependence on foreign oil and using renewable energy to help fight global warming will make our nation safer and our economy stronger. And at a time when unemployment in the Inland area is growing, these investments will help create thousands of new energy transition jobs, such as solar panel manufacturing and green building construction."

The Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act extends and expands tax incentives for renewable electricity, energy and fuel. It also increases incentives for plug-in hybrid cars and energy efficient homes, buildings, and appliances. Additionally, the bill includes solar energy tax credits that could reduce carbon dioxide pollution by 240 million tons. The new investments in wind, solar, geothermal and fuel cell technology will also create hundreds of thousands of new jobs and help strengthen the American economy.

Additionally, the legislation approved today repeals $18 billion in unnecessary tax subsidies for big, multinational oil and gas companies. The vote comes shortly after the big five oil companies recently reported record profits for 2007, with ExxonMobil earning $40.6 billion - the largest corporate profit in American history.

"As oil companies continue to post record profits and receive government handouts from this Administration, consumers are suffering at the pumps. Since President Bush first took office in 2001, gas prices in California have risen an astronomical 132%. This month, the average cost of a gallon of gasoline in the state of California rose to $3.34," added Rep. Baca. "Enough is enough. I am proud to back this responsible legislation that will slash subsidies to oil companies, create jobs and help make our nation energy independent."

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