By Marissa McNatt
From the hype around the Keystone Pipeline’s potential for job creation, to the whopping tax breaks given to oil companies, these are some of the numbers and statements that caught our attention this year.
Our index offers food for thought on environmental issues as 2011 comes to a close.
1) Record-breaking amount the U.S. spent on damages from 12 separate weather/climate disasters in 2011: approximately $52 billion
2) Amount in profits the five biggest oil companies in America made during the first three-quarters of 2011 due to high oil prices: $100 billion
3) Amount oil companies have fought to retain in tax breaks: $4 billion annually
4) Amount the federal government spends on the oil and gas industry annually compared to investments in renewable energy: 13 times more