House Democrats include wind and solar tax credit extensions in sweeping infrastructure bill

By Abby Smith | Washington examiner | June 22, 2020 | ~~

House Democrats are proposing to extend wind and solar tax credits by at least five years as part of their $1.5 trillion infrastructure package, teeing up a fight with Senate Republicans.

The infrastructure bill, the Moving Forward Act, incorporates a discussion draft released late last year by Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee that would extend a variety of clean energy tax credits. House Democrats released the text of the package on Monday.

In addition to the wind and solar tax credits, which would be extended for five and six years, respectively, the legislation would extend incentives for carbon capture technology and offshore wind. The bill would also create an incentive for energy storage, waste energy technologies, and qualifying biogas projects.

The legislation would also allow renewable energy developers to receive their tax credits as direct payments, a step the industry has requested from Congress for months to help maintain funding for projects during the virus-related economic downturn.

The renewable energy provisions “would provide a stable and effective policy platform for clean energy deployment over the next five years,” said Gregory Wetstone, head of the American Council on Renewable Energy.

He added in a statement that the provisions on energy storage, offshore wind, and direct pay “would be especially helpful in realizing the full potential of renewable deployment.”

The inclusion of the clean energy tax credit language follows increasing pressure on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi from rank-and-file Democrats to include aid to the renewable energy sector in coronavirus relief efforts. The renewable energy industry has shed nearly 100,000 jobs since the pandemic began, according to analysis from BW Research, Environmental Entrepreneurs, the American Council on Renewable Energy, and E4TheFuture.

Some Democrats quickly welcomed the clean energy provisions in the bill. The infrastructure-specific pieces of the legislation also include a significant climate focus, including massive investments in electric cars, zero-emissions buses, and electricity grid modernization to support more renewable energy.

Pelosi has said she intends to bring the bill up for a vote before July 4. House Transportation Committee Democrats cleared a nearly $500 billion surface transportation bill, the vehicle for the broader package, on June 18.

“With this package, we have a tremendous opportunity to put Americans back to work in the short-term while modernizing our infrastructure to achieve a cleaner, more resilient, more competitive, and more just economy overall,” said Rep. Paul Tonko, a New York Democrat who chairs the environment and climate change subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. He and New Mexico Sen. Martin Heinrich recently led a bicameral letter of more than 50 Democrats calling on congressional leadership to support clean energy in virus-relief legislation.

Nonetheless, the inclusion of renewable energy tax credit extensions is likely to anger many Republicans, who slammed Democrats in March for attempting to add clean energy priorities to the CARES Act.

“Democrats won’t let us fund hospitals or save small businesses unless they get to dust off the Green New Deal?” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in heated floor remarks March 23 during that debate.

And Senate and House Republicans have already criticized the Democratic infrastructure bill as akin to the progressive “Green New Deal,” even before the renewable energy tax credit provisions were added..........................

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Comment by arthur qwenk on June 24, 2020 at 11:33am


Free and Fair Markets will make Renewables a thing of the past.

On to clean High Density power  solutions to the worlds energy needs, not futile intermittent feel good group-think based hypocrisy promoting environmental damage of Wind scamming.

Comment by Willem Post on June 23, 2020 at 6:39pm

My recommendation to Republicans and still sane Democrats is to give nothing to the RE industries.

They have had outrageously high subsidies for about 20 years.

The US has far higher priorities, such as increasing energy efficiency and organizational efficiency of the entire US economy.

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”

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