Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Energy Scam

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U.S. President Jimmy Carter, in the 170s declared an energy crisis, Congress responded with a tax credit to encourage business to turn domestic coal into a substitute for imported foreign oil. Known as Internal Revenue Code Section , the program hands out tax credits for synfuels. Today, the synthetic-fuels tax credit still remains on the books. Companies that manufacturer synfuel use coal fines, dust or ground coal, mixed and soaked with an oily liquid that may include chemicals, binders and additives, to alter the product’s chemical composition. They then bake the mixture into briquettes for sale to utilities. The resulting product has the same energy content as regular coal and burns similarly. But its different in one respect The “synthetic coal” (which is really a synfuel) generates a tax credit of about $6 a ton. Some 55 coal-based synfuel plants sprang up to take advantage of the tax credits worth as much as $1 billion a year. Today, 7 plants operate in West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia while only four are still located in Western states. Fifteen plants operate in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois, while nine are located in Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina.

Personally, After reading this article I was appalled and after doing a little more research it is disturbing to see some of these companies taking these huge tax breaks and paying a lower tax rate than what someone making $5-0,000 dollars a year. What would be interesting to see would to see how much profit one of these companies that takes these tax breaks would make without the tax break, and would some of these companies go bankrupt? Reading more into this topic I also learned that burning coal causes pollution, which is another reason for taxpayers to not be happy with what the government is doing. The government seems to make the rich, richer and th


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