Hi folks, David Friedman here with my first HybridBlog. I just got back from a really unique press conference… it is not often that a Senator from Utah, a Senator from Rhode Island, three of the 6 largest automakers in the US market, fuel providers, and representatives from scientific and environmental groups can all stand together behind a podium to support one bill in Congress. But that is exactly what just happened as I stood with Senators Hatch and Chafee to support the introduction of the Clean Efficient Automobiles Resulting from Advanced Car Technologies Act of 2005, or the CLEAR ACT (granted, the fuel providers supply alternative fuels such as natural gas, not gasoline).
If you want to see what I said, you can check out my statement here.
Unlike today’s $2,000 tax deduction (which is worth only $400-$600 in your pocket and is on the way out), the tax credits in the CLEAR ACT, if enacted, would effectively take $2,000-$3,000 off the price of hybrids, depending on the technology on board and the fuel economy of the vehicle relative to conventional versions. The Civic would be at the lower end, the Escape in the middle, and the Prius on the high end.
The tax credits for hybrids would run through 2010, and alone will not solve our oil and global warming problems (we still need to raise fuel economy standards, enact standards and caps for heat trapping emissions like carbon dioxide, and get more renewable fuels into the pumps and electricity grid). But this legislation is a really important part of creating a market for better technologies and fuels.
Once we succeed in getting this to become law, we plan to add a calculator to our website that will tell you how large the tax credit will be for each hybrid. Of course, we need to get this into law, first. You can help out by contacting your Senators and getting them on board. We'll have a link to our action center up here in the next day or so to help you weigh in.
Posted by: DJF