Tax Cuts for Oil Drilling Pass Michigan Senate

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- A tax cut for a specific method of oil drilling has passed the Senate.

The House bill that passed 25-13 Wednesday would lower the severance tax for drilling projects involving carbon dioxide.

The technique involves using carbon dioxide to push oil from wells that otherwise is unrecoverable. Related bills that passed Tuesday also expand oil and gas companies' authority to construct certain carbon dioxide pipelines on private property.

Supporters of the bill package say it would boost Michigan's economy and reduce the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

The Sierra Club's Michigan chapter says tax breaks shouldn't be given to the oil industry and warns expanded drilling will hurt the environment.

The legislation is expected to reach Gov. Rick Snyder soon. It doesn't involve the controversial "fracking" drilling method.

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