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Renewable Energy Tax Credits News Briefs - March 2014

On Jan. 22, Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) sent a letter to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and House Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Dave Camp regarding a multi-year extension of advanced energy tax credits to provide certainty for businesses until a new tax policy is phased in. AEE called for certainty and stability for businesses and investors. The letter said the extension of the renewable energy production tax credit (PTC) would make the energy system more secure, clean, affordable, allow facilities to qualify on a technology-neutral basis and provide more certainty for investment decisions. The letter is available at www.energytaxcredits.com.

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Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter on Jan. 21 released a report addressed to the White House that included options to address climate change. The report, “Powering Forward: Presidential and Executive Agency Actions to Drive Clean Energy in America,” presents thoughts from CEOs, energy experts, academicians and other industry thought leaders about what new presidential and executive agency actions would help the nation be more effective in meeting climate and energy production goals. The five areas on which the report focuses are doubling energy productivity, financing renewable energy, producing natural gas responsibly, developing alternative fuels and vehicles, and enabling electric and gas utilities to adapt to the new realities of the 21st century. The report is available at www.energytaxcredits.com.

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On Jan. 29, the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) announced the release of its Southeastern Region Report. The fourth and final part of the company’s sixth annual, “Renewable Energy in the 50 States” report series, the Southeastern Region Report focuses on the renewable energy sector in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Washington. ACORE reports that in 2012 renewable energy accounted for 6 percent of the region’s total electricity generation, compared to 12 percent nationally. The report also found that despite biomass being a dominant source of renewable power in the region, new biomass plants are being built infrequently. ACORE also notes that while some states such as Texas have become leaders in wind development, 10 of the 14 states have no installed wind power capacity. The report is available at acore.org.

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The University of Connecticut and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory released a joint study on Jan. 9 entitled “Relationship between Wind Turbines and Residential Property Values in Massachusetts.” The study investigates the effect of proximity, noise and waste associated with wind turbines in relation to reduction of property values near planned or operating wind turbine developments in Massachusetts. The study compared prices of transactions during one of four development periods and discussed public acceptance and opposition to wind energy. The study concludes that there is weak evidence that wind turbines affect the prices of nearby homes. The report is available at www.energytaxcredits.com.

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ACORE announced on Jan. 10 that Michael R. Brower will be the permanent CEO and president. He has been interim CEO since July 2013. An ACORE member since 2002, Brower is a member of the board of directors and a leadership council member. Until mid-January, he served as senior federal policy director at Mosaic Federal Affairs, a subsidiary of New York law firm Hiscock and Barclay LLP. Brower is a retired career Naval Officer and served in the Secretary of the Navy’s personal office as special assistant for Air Warfare. Brower also helped draft the first Farm Bill Energy Title and parts of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and the Energy Infrastructure and Security Act of 2007.

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On Jan. 23, Geronimo Energy announced the acquisition of Green River wind farm from Mainstream Renewable Power. Located in Whiteside, Lee and Bureau counties in Illinois, the wind farm is situated on 13,500 acres and will provide up to 225MW of energy. Geronimo immediately sought the qualification of Green River wind farm for the PTC. This project, in combination with Walnut Ridge, a 210MW project that is already in the advanced stages of development, will produce 435MW in renewable energy.

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On Jan. 15, ACORE announced the addition of Dan Adler, Matt Cheney, Kathleen Weiss and Michael Ware to the 2014 board of directors. Adler, managing director of the California Clean Energy Fun (CalCEF), a nonprofit created to accelerate investment in California’s clean energy economy, is returning to the board. Before he was with CalCEF, Adler was a senior analyst at the California Public Utilities Commission. Cheney is the CEO of CleanPath Ventures LLC. Cheney was previously CEO of Fotowatio Renewable Ventrures. Weiss is vice president of Federal Government Affairs for First Solar. Before this, she worked for Centex Corporation, a national homebuilder. Ware is the founder of Advance Capital Markets Inc., a private investment firm. Prior to this, Ware was a financial adviser to Good Energies.

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On Jan. 14, Google announced the investment of $75 million in the Panhandle 2 Carson County wind farm. Helping to meet the company’s goal of using 100 percent renewable energy, the Texas-based wind farm will have a 182MW production capacity. The wind farm will have 79 2.3MW turbines and will power 56,000 homes. This new fund will be operated by Clean Power Finance. This is Google’s second investment in the Texas Panhandle, following a $200 million investment in Spinning Spur in Oldham County in January 2013. The Panhandle 2 Carson County wind farm is scheduled to go online by the end of 2014.

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Renewable Energy Tax Credits

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