Statement by Todd Foley, Senior Vice President, Policy & Government Affairs, American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE)
Washington, D.C. – “We’re encouraged that Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) has acknowledged the lack of parity for expired renewable energy incentives that apply to geothermal, hydropower, closed and open-loop biomass, and marine hydro-kinetic power generation.
However, this initial tax extenders proposal provides only a retroactive extension for 2018 that would at best be enacted in December after investment decisions for the year have already been made. The proposal thus fails to provide any incentive for future investment, even as that is supposed to be the purpose of the credits. At a minimum, the credits for these technologies should be extended through the end of 2021 to provide a stable business planning horizon. The present tax situation for these renewable energy technologies has created uncertainty and confusion for industries that support hundreds of thousands of jobs in the U.S. economy.
Separately, we are disappointed to see that the current legislation does not include a provision for an Energy Storage Investment Tax Credit (ITC). Energy storage technology is a critical component to an advanced, modernized, faster and cleaner grid that enables cheaper renewable electricity to be used at times when prices are higher, while also providing an array of ancillary grid services that allows our existing grid to operate more efficiently and effectively.
We are supportive of language contained in the bipartisan Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act (H.R.4649 and S.1868) introduced by Representatives Costello (R-PA) and Doyle (D-PA) and Senators Heller (R-NV) and Heinrich (D-NM) and strongly urge quick action to enact this provision and the aforementioned incentive for other renewable energy technologies in a tax extenders package before the end of 2018.”
BACKGROUND ON RENEWABLE ENERGY INCENTIVES
- In December of 2015, renewable energy incentives that apply to geothermal, hydropower, closed and open-loop biomass, and marine hydro-kinetic power generation were left on the cutting room floor when Congress extended tax credits for solar and wind power
- In the years since, Congress has enacted only quick fix retroactive extensions that fail to provide market incentives. It’s no coincidence that we’ve seen a significant decline in annual investment in these technologies over since that point, and this year is currently on pace for the lowest level of investment since 2004
- All forms of energy benefit from tax incentives except those for renewable energy have been allowed to expire or are being phased down and out, while those for fossil fuel and other resources are permanent and deep in the tax code
The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) is a national non-profit organization that unites finance, policy and technology to accelerate the transition to a renewable energy economy. Founded in 2001, ACORE is the focal point for collaborative advocacy across the renewable energy sector, supported by hundreds of members spanning renewable energy technologies and constituencies. Every year, ACORE convenes top business leaders and policymakers at its annual forums on finance, policy and grid technology in New York, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco. For more information about ACORE, please visit www.acore.org and follow @ACORE on Twitter.
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