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Senate Approves Energy Bill

The Senate approved energy legislation that would increase fuel-efficiency standards for automobiles, provide tax incentives for development of alternative fuels and require greater use of ethanol, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The measure now faces a number of hurdles in the House.  Auto makers aren’t backing off their fight against the provision, which would require that their fleets of cars and trucks reach 35 miles a gallon by 2020, up from the current 25 miles a gallon.

Oil companies and their allies yesterday helped Republicans defeat a proposal to cut energy companies’ tax breaks by $28 billion over 10 years, but Democrats were trying to leave open the possibility it could be revived later. The rest of the energy bill remained intact.

Detroit’s auto makers fear strict mileage rules could cost billions of dollars amid continued losses in their core North American operations.

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