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Obama calls for investment in alternative energy sources

U.S. President
Barack Obama
Washington DC, United States — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 03 May 2011 – President Barack Obama has reiterated his call to end billions of dollars in tax breaks for oil companies and to invest instead in alternative energy sources.

In his weekly radio and Internet address, the president said the United States should not be granting US$4 billion in tax breaks to oil companies at a time when they are reaping tens of billions of dollars in profit, and petrol prices have risen above US$4 per gallon in much of the nation.

“While rising fuel prices mean real pain for our families at the pump, they also mean bigger profits for oil companies,” he said. “When oil companies are making huge profits and you’re struggling at the pump, and we’re scouring the federal budget for spending we can afford to do without, these tax giveaways aren’t right.’’

With the U.S. projected to run deficits of more than US$1 trillion this year and next, Obama has been seeking to protect his initiatives on energy research from calls by Republicans and some Democrats in Congress to cut federal spending.

Obama said the government should be spending money on developing new energy sources, such as solar- and wind-power, and on encouraging the development of energy-efficient technologies.

“I refuse to cut things like clean energy that will help America win the future by growing our economy and creating good, paying jobs,” Obama said.

Obama’s fiscal 2012 budget plan, unveiled on 14 February, proposes eliminating oil and gas tax breaks estimated at US$46.2 billion over 10 years.