President Obama plans to boost Federal support for private sector clean energy research and development.
On Wednesday, the President met with state Governors to make clear that Energy Policy is at the forefront of the Administration’s agenda and the Fiscal Year 2011 Federal Budget.
Mr. Obama said in a statement, “As I said at the State of the Union last week, I am convinced that whoever builds a clean energy economy, whoever is at the forefront of that, is going to own the 21st century global economy.”
With continued investment in clean technologies, President Obama projects that by 2022 production of American-grown biofuels will double current output numbers to 36 billion gallons.
While the President prioritizes decreased dependence on foreign oil, the Energy Department found that this week the demand for retail gas has dropped along with the national average in retail gas prices. A drop in retail gas prices is good news for consumers, as the price fluctuations in the crude oil market often dictate whether or not a consumer will have to break the bank at the pump.
Although, the national average of gas prices is $2.661 per gallon – by far much less than the price consumers are actually paying in certain regions. In high price state California, the average price per retail gas gallon is $3.00. In Alaska the average is also high, coming to $3.41 a gallon. Likewise, Hawaii’s gas guzzlers are taking in gas at a price of $3.30 per gallon.
Less dependence on foreign oil may also come as good news to Americans as Federal funding for research and experimentation in clean energy has “already saved and created somewhere in the area of over ten thousand jobs”, according to Vice President Joe Biden.
The 2011 Budget includes a proposed permanent extension of the R&E tax credit, which guarantees investment into private sector businesses completing research and development in clean energy technologies.
Also included in the budget is $40 billion in loan guarantees for the private sector, according to Aneesh Chopra, one of four key speakers in the Open for Questions: Innovation in the Fiscal Year 2011 Budget tele-conference. The purpose of the loan guarantees, said Chopra, is to ensure that early seed ideas are eligible for investment. The availability of more financial resources will spur productive entrepreneurial action by promoting a competitive market, said key speaker Diana Farrell.
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