ONGOING DOMESTIC CLIMATE CHANGE PROGRAMS

There are dozens of win-win climate change programs and initiatives put into place by President Clinton since 1993. These investments aim to develop and deploy energy efficient technologies and spur the development and broader use of renewable energy. These efforts have accelerated and expanded since the Kyoto climate change conference in 1997. Sustaining this commitment to reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions has been a focused effort by President Clinton to invest in the research, development, and deployment of energy efficiency technologies and renewable energy — an area whose budget in the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has exceeded $800 million each and every year of the Clinton Administration.

The centerpiece of President Clintonís domestic climate change program is the Climate Change Technology Initiative (CCTI) — a package of targeted tax incentives and investments aimed at increasing energy efficiency and spurring broader use of renewable energy. The package will save consumers money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the same time. CCTI investments have totaled over $1 billion each of the past two years. The Presidentís FY 2001 budget proposes a still more accelerated effort. Highlights of CCTIís proposed $4.0 billion tax package (over 5 years) include:

  • Tax credits for energy efficient homes.
    Consumers would receive $1,000- $2,000 credit toward the purchase of a new energy efficient home; a 20 percent tax credit for the purchase of selected energy efficient products for their homes and buildings; and a $1,000-$2,000 credit for installing a solar energy system.
  • Tax credits for fuel-efficient cars.
    The package extends the current tax credit (of up to $4000) through 2006 for qualified electric and fuel cell vehicles and also include a tax credit of $500 - $3000 for the purchase of a qualifying hybrid vehicle from 2003-2006.
  • Tax credits for clean energy.
    The package extends the 1.5 cents per kilowatt hour tax credit for the production of electricity from wind and closed-loop biomass; provides credits for open-loop biomass facilities and coal biomass cofiring; and provides credits for electricity produced from methane from certain landfills.

The following survey highlights the most important U.S. climate change programs and initiatives, most of which are administered by the DOE, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and/or the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Together, the programs cover the four major greenhouse gas-emitting sectors of the U.S. economy (buildings, transportation, industry, and electricity), and carbon sequestration and agriculture.

 

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