Natural gas-massive tax breaks or putting on the brakes

In the US the senate is proposing massive tax breaks for users of natural gas as a transportation fuel. In British Columbia there is a carbon tax on natural gas to encourage a shift to renewable energy. In the US natural gas is seen as a way to become independent of foreign oil and to clean the air in cities of particulates that cause breathing problems and cancer. Vancouver, B.C. and the surrounding Fraser Valley are surrounded by mountains that trap pollution. The population in the area suffers from a lack the clean air. The air would be a lot cleaner if transportation fuel was shifted to natural gas. Ironically, B.C. has some of the best natural gas reserves in North America.

A new bill, NAT GAS (New Alternative Transportation to Give Americans Solutions), has been proposed by U.S. Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV),and Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) which looks to push natural gas vehicles into the consumer mainstream.  The proposal looks to offer a bevy of natural gas vehicle purchasing, refueling and manufacturing tax credits which would eclipse even current credits for electric vehicles.
People purchasing a light vehicle capable of running on natural gas would get a $12,500 tax credit, significantly more than the $7,500 credit offered for plug-in vehicles.  Current tax credits for three other weight classes would double, up to a maximum of $80,000 for the largest vehicle class. Source: Daily Tech.

In B.C. I have just received my Terasen bill for last month’s natural gas. It came to $45.03 including a carbon tax of $1.56. This is for a household of 10 for domestic hot water and one stove. It’s difficult for a jurisdiction to treat natural gas as a global warming villain and then turn around and encourage it’s use in transportation. B.C. needs to come clean and treat natural gas as part of the solution and not part of the problem.

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