Renewable Energy Tax Credit News Briefs - July 2017

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

H.R. 2413 was introduced May 11 in the U.S. House of Representatives. Also known as the Offshore Wind Incentives for New Development Act or Offshore WIND Act, the bill would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend the 30 percent investment tax credit (ITC) for offshore wind properties through the year 2025. The ITC is into a phasedown under which it will drop from the current 30 percent to 26 percent in the year 2020 and eventually to a permanent 10 percent credit starting in 2022. Under this legislation, the ITC would remain at 30 percent for qualified offshore wind property through the end of the year 2025. The bill was introduced by Sens. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I. H.R. 2413 (S. 1102 in the Senate) is available at www.energytaxcredits.com. 

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The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) board announced new leadership at AWEA’s Windpower conference and Exhibition in Anaheim, Calif., May 22-25. The board elected Tristan Grimbert, president and CEO of EDF Renewable Energy, as chairman. Grimbert also serves on the board of directors for BrightSource Energy Inc. Before joining EDF Renewable Energy, he was president and CEO of Mensi SA, a wholly owned subsidiary of EDF, and later was with Trimble Navigation Limited.

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The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) released its latest U.S. Solar Market Insight report June 8. SEIA projects that the industry will nearly triple over the next five years, with the first-quarter report showing that for the sixth straight quarter, the solar industry added more than 2 gigawatts of solar capacity. The reports states that the United States installed 2,044 megawatts of solar PV in the first quarter of this year, reaching 44.7 gigawatts of total installed capacity, which is enough to power 8.7 million American homes. The utility-scale segment continues to drive the market, representing more than half of all PV installed during the quarter, according to SEIA. The association also reported that GTM Research does forecast that new PV installations for 2017 will be down by from 2016 by 16 percent. However, SEIA is projecting that more than 18 GW of solar PV capacity will be installed annually by the year 2022. Playing a role in all of this is the phasedown of the investment tax credit, which begins to drop in 2020. The report is available for purchase at www.seia.org. 

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Texas Senate Bill 277, which prohibits tax incentives for wind energy projects within 25 miles of military aviation bases that use fixed-wing aircraft, was signed into law June 8. S.B. 277 is designed to protect and preserve military aviation facilities, the areas surrounding those facilities, and the aviation operations or training conducted at those facilities from any unintended consequences occurring as a result of the installation or construction of wind-powered energy devices on property located in close proximity to the boundaries of those facilities. Properties constructed or are under construction before Sept. 1, and are located in close proximity to the boundaries of a military aviation facility will continue to be eligible to receive tax benefits S.B. 277 will be effective Sept. 1.

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