Following a partisan feud last week that halted progress, the U.S. Senate has recessed for the Memorial Day break without a vote on whether to advance the EXPIRE Act, a tax extenders package including the production tax credit (PTC) for clean energy and the investment tax credit (ITC) election for wind. Senate leaders from both sides of the aisle have been working on a compromise regarding whether Republicans will be able to make amendments to the bill.
Earlier this week, a broad coalition from the clean energy business community issued a letter to Senators urging speedy passage of the EXPIRE Act. According to the American Wind Energy Association, the PTC and ITC have successfully driven over $118 billion in private investment just from wind energy development to date. The group says landowners, farmers, supply chain manufacturers and other beneficiaries are looking for an immediate extension of the expired tax credits to reenergize new business and project development for various types of clean energy.
"Policy certainty is key to making long-term business decisions," says Linda Church Ciocci, executive director of the National Hydropower Association. "The expiration of the tax credit injects instability into our members' decision-making process. We hope that the Senate returns from recess and expeditiously passes the EXPIRE Act, which was approved by the Finance Committee with bipartisan support."
"The American Farm Bureau believes that a significant part of our nation's energy should come from the development and use of renewable energy sources," says Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation. "These sources are critical to our nation's energy future and will help further strengthen the overall national security of the United States. Renewable energy sources also contribute to the stability of the rural economy by creating another source of income to our nation's farmers and ranchers."
John Purcell, vice president of the energy division at Leeco Steel, adds, "As a manufacturer for the U.S. wind industry, we're proud to have scaled up to meet the growing demand for wind energy.
"There are over 550 manufacturing facilities in the U.S. capable of churning our American-made materials to provide clean, affordable, home grown energy," he continues. "We hope that the Senate quickly takes up the EXPIRE Act upon their return so we can focus on increasing production instead of an uncertain market."
To read more about the EXPIRE Act and the outlook for its ultimate passage, click here.