The American Petroleum Institute issued the following statement today from President Jack Gerard on the G-20 economic summit: “As President Obama prepares to meet with the leaders of the G-20 nations Thursday, he should be commended for noting that climate change is a challenge for both developed and developing nations. "But his call to ‘phase out fossil fuel subsidies’ is a wrong-headed approach that should be seen for what it really is: A giant tax hike on American consumers. "With the nation’s economy struggling to begin a recovery, now is not the time to be imposing new taxes that would likely raise energy costs, discourage new production and kill jobs. By raising energy taxes under the veil of eliminating fossil fuel subsidies, oil and natural gas companies would be deprived of the capital they need to invest in exploration and development. That would likely kill jobs, restrict the supply of energy and increase costs to consumers and businesses. "Advocates of this strategy make the ludicrous claim that so-called subsidies lead to the overproduction of oil and natural gas. And their policy prescriptions would cut or end programs like the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. These are ill-conceived ideas that would leave our most vulnerable citizens without heat in the winter, undermine the nation’s energy security and tighten oil and natural gas supplies at a time when the nation needs energy from all sources to fuel a recovery. "According to a recent study by Pricewaterhouse Coopers, the oil and natural gas industry supports 9.2 million jobs and in 2007 contributed 7.5% to the gross domestic product. It simply makes no sense to raise taxes that threaten those jobs and undermine one of our nation’s vital economic engines at a time when America needs energy from all sources to fuel a recovery.”