Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Portman Blasts Brunner and Fisher On Their Support of Cap and Tax

Marion, OH - Following a tour today of Nucor Steel mill and meetings with Nucor employees yesterday, U.S. Senate candidate Rob Portman criticized Congress' plan to impose a cap-and-trade energy tax that will punish Ohio's working families, factories and small businesses. Portman also criticized both Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher and Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner.

"Congress has failed to provide any meaningful help for Ohioans suffering through this historic economic crisis. Instead, Washington continues to pursue an agenda of record deficits, higher taxes and other job-killing proposals. Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher and Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner blindly support one of Washington's biggest job-killers for Ohio like the cap-and-trade energy tax.

"The cap and trade energy bill that has already passed in the U.S. House of Representatives and is being debated in the Senate will be devastating for Ohio's workers and small businesses. Ohio is particularly hard hit because 86 percent of us get our electricity from coal, and Ohio has more energy intensive manufacturers who would be subject to these new costly regulations. The cap-and-trade proposal will raise energy costs for all working families and increase the cost of many goods and services as businesses are forced to pass higher energy costs onto consumers. This will lead to more job losses at a time when Ohio's unemployment rate is the highest it's been in 27 years.

"Unfortunately both Lt. Governor Fisher and Secretary Brunner enthusiastically support Washington's wrongheaded energy policy. Rather than levy a job-killing cap and trade tax on the kind of energy Ohio depends on we should aggressively use renewable energy, nuclear power, clean-coal technology, lower-emission natural gas and conservation in a way that leads to a cleaner environment, less foreign oil and more jobs in Ohio. We can deal with these climate issues without hurting Ohio working families and sacrificing jobs in a bad economy."

Portman made his remarks during a visit to NUCOR Steel in Marion, Ohio. NUCOR employs 253 people in Ohio and has a production capacity that exceeds 26 million tons, making it the largest producer of steel in the United States. Nucor is also the world's foremost steel recycler and one of the largest recyclers of any kind.

"Nucor Steel is concerned that this cap and trade bill will result in dramatically higher prices for all types of energy and hamper our global competitiveness because other countries like China and Brazil are not legislating against their manufacturers and as a result jobs will move off shore to those countries where more CO2 will be emitted," said David Sumoski, Vice President and General Manager of Nucor Steel Marion. Sumoski noted that the domestic steel industry in the US has already lowered CO2 emissions 30% since 1990 by using state of the art electric furnace technology that was pioneered by Nucor.

Sumoski continued, "Rob Portman understands that higher energy costs would have a devastating impact on local manufacturers and will lead to more job losses in Ohio. His opposition to cap and trade demonstrates his understanding of the challenges facing the steel industry and manufacturers during this tough economy."

Cap and Trade is Expensive to Ohio Families and Businesses

· Higher energy prices would have ripple impacts on prices throughout the economy and would impose a financial cost on Ohio families. According to the National Association of Manufacturing, Ohio would see disposable household income reduced by $133 to $261 per year by 2020 and $873 to $1,419 by 2030 because of increased energy costs. (http://www.accf.org/media/docs/nam/2009/Ohio.pdf)

· A study of Waxman-Markey issued by the National Black Chamber of Commerce found that retail electricity rates will increase increase by 12% (1.3 cents per kWh) relative to 2015 levels, by 24% (2.7 cents per kWh) in 2030, and by 48% (5.8 cents per kWh) in 2050. (http://www.nationalbcc.org/images/stories/documents/CRA_Waxman-Markey_Aug2008_Update_Final.pdf)

· The Energy Information Administration (EIA), which is the government agency responsible for providing official energy statistics, concluded that cap-and-trade could result in up to 2.3 million fewer jobs in 2030 and 800,000 fewer manufacturing jobs in 2030, after including new green jobs. (http://eia.doe.gov/oiaf/servicerpt/hr2454/excel/hr2454nibiv.xls)

· EPA estimates the House bill would cost the average household 22 cents to 30 cents per day, or $80 to $111 per year in energy costs. (http://energycommerce.house.gov/Press_111/20090623/hr2454_epasummary.pdf)

· The Congressional Budget Office projected a cost of 48 cents per day for the average household in 2020 ($175 per year). (http://energycommerce.house.gov/Press_111/20090623/hr2454_epasummary.pdf)

Cap and Trade will Cost Ohio More Jobs

· The National Black Chamber of Commerce commissioned a study that concluded cap-and-trade would result in approximately 1.5 million fewer jobs in 2015 and 3.6 million fewer jobs in 2050, after new green jobs were considered. (http://www.nationalbcc.org/images/stories/documents/CRA_Waxman-Markey_Aug2008_Update_Final.pdf)

· The National Association of Manufacturing estimates that under Waxman-Markey, Ohio jobs decline by 79,700 under "low cost" scenarios and by 108,600 under "high cost" scenarios. The primary cause of job loss is due to lower output because of higher energy prices, the cost of complying with emissions reductions, and greater competition from overseas manufacturers with lower energy costs. (http://www.accf.org/media/dynamic/3/media_387.pdf)

· The National Association of Manufacturing estimate that high energy prices, fewer jobs, and loss of industrial output will reduce Ohio's gross state product (GSP) by between $1.3 and $2.3 billion per year by 2020 and $13.9 and $18.9 billion by 2030. (http://www.accf.org/media/docs/nam/2009/Ohio.pdf)

Cap and Trade is Anti-Competitive

· Ohio's major economic sectors will be affected by emission caps. According to the National Manufacturing Association, Ohio's current two largest sectors-chemical manufacturing and transportation manufacturing-show decreases in output of 6.1% to 6.7% and 8.0% to 8.5%, respectively in 2030. (http://www.accf.org/media/docs/nam/2009/Ohio.pdf)

· All Ohio manufacturing sectors will suffer output losses of between 5.4% and 6.0% by 2030, while output from energy intensive sectors falls between 10.7% and 11.7%. (http://www.accf.org/media/docs/nam/2009/Ohio.pdf)

· Ohio's coal production would fall between 70.5% and 76.8% and electricity production would fall by 15.1% to 18.6% by 2030. These continued losses will have a lasting effect on the economic base of Ohio. (http://www.accf.org/media/docs/nam/2009/Ohio.pdf)