March 30, 2011 / 5:03 PM / 9 years ago

Factbox: Obama unveils new energy goals

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama announced a goal of cutting U.S. oil imports by a third during the next 10 years in a speech on Wednesday.

Here are some of the energy goals Obama announced and the administration’s planned steps to accomplish them:

EXPAND DOMESTIC OIL, GAS PRODUCTION

The Interior Department said that 57 percent of onshore acres leased for oil and gas development are unused, and 70 percent of offshore leased acres are unused. The department is developing incentives to expedite development by lease-holders and is evaluating royalty rate structures similar to those used in Texas in order to encourage faster production.

DEVELOP ALTERNATIVES TO OIL

The White House set a goal of breaking ground on four cellulosic or advanced bio-refineries over the next two years to help commercialize those technologies.

The administration also will focus on improving transparency about natural gas fracking and begin developing recommendations for safe shale extraction.

DEVELOP MORE EFFICIENT CARS AND TRUCKS

Fuel economy standards for new cars are expected to save 1.8 billion barrels of oil during those vehicles’ lifetimes, the administration said. The White House said it plans to finalize in July 2011 national fuel economy and greenhouse-gas emission standards for vehicles built starting in 2014.

A $7,500 tax credit to encourage adoption of electric vehicles and funding for research in battery technology, which were included in President Obama’s proposed 2012 budget, are intended to further a goal of 1 million electric vehicles by 2015.

The president also has asked agencies to purchase only alternative-fuel vehicles by 2015.

MOVE TOWARD CLEANER ENERGY AND IMPROVE ENERGY EFFICIENCY

The administration wants to generate 80 percent of the nation’s electricity from clean sources by 2035, which includes weatherizing homes and making commercial buildings 20 percent more efficient by 2020.

The White House also said its 2012 proposed budget more than doubles funding for the Advanced Research Project Agency-Energy, which funds research projects in smart-grid technology, carbon capture and other areas.

Reporting by Emily Stephenson; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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