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Renewable Energy Tax Credits News Briefs - September 2013

On Aug. 1, the U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) president and CEO Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn as assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations and Environment, within the Department of Defense. President Barack Obama nominated McGinn for the post July 8. He is expected to continue to lead ACORE during August, transitioning the organization to interim CEO Michael Brower. McGinn joined ACORE in 2011. McGinn is also co-chairman of the CNA Military Advisory Board, and is a member of the Steering Committee of the Energy Future Coalition, the United States Energy Security Council, the Bipartisan Policy Center Energy Board and was a corporate officer at Battelle Memorial Institute. Before that, McGinn served in the Navy for 35 years. He has a bachelor’s degree in naval engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy and attended the national security program at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He was also a Chief of Naval Operations strategic studies fellow at the U.S. Naval War College.

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The Environment America Research & Policy Center July 23 released “Lighting the Way: What Can We Learn from America’s Top 12 Solar States,” a report highlighting a solar energy boom across the country. According to the report, the top 12 solar states, which were ranked by their solar production and use per capita are Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii, New Jersey, New Mexico, California, Delaware, Colorado, Vermont, Massachusetts, North Carolina and Maryland. The report emphasizes that it is the degree to which state and local governments have created effective public policy for the development of the solar industry that places them in the top 12. Some of the policies that states follow include renewable electricity standards, statewide interconnection policies and allowing for creative financing options. The report can be viewed at the Environment America Research & Policy Center.

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The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) released its sixth annual report on solar installation trends in July. Entitled, “Solar Growth Driven by ITC and Section 1603,” the report found that photovoltaic (PV) installation capacity increased by 80 percent to 3.3 gigawatts (GW) compared to 2011. In addition, IREC reports that nearly 95,000 grid-connected PV installations were completed – a 46 percent increase from the previous year. The report says that solar energy markets are booming because of PV prices, consumer demand and available financing. The report credits the federal investment tax credit, or ITC, as one of the main drivers of PV growth in 2012. The report also recognized the 1603 Treasury Grant program as a key contributor to continued solar installation growth in 2013. The report is available at the Interstate Renewable Energy Council.

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The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) released its U.S. Wind Industry Second Quarter 2013 Market Report in July. The report determined that activity in the U.S. wind energy industry has increased following the early-year production tax credit (PTC) extension, despite the delay in congressional approval for the credit. AWEA says that because Congress did not pass the extension until New Year’s Day, only 1.6 megawatts (MW) of wind power were commissioned during the first six months and none was commissioned during the second quarter. Now, AWEA says, requests for proposals (RFPs) and power purchase agreements (PPAs) reflect the increase in activity for impending project construction. The report concluded that more than 20 RFPs have been issued. Approximately 1,300MW are now under construction, and more than 3,600MW in PPAs are secured. The report showed that in total, utility plans for wind announced in the first six-plus months of the year total nearly 5,000MW.

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SolarCity, a clean energy distributor, announced the launch of a new operations center on July 15. The center, located in Stockton, Calif. can provide San Joaquin residents and businesses with solar PV panels. The center is 18,000 square feet and is currently staffed with more than 70 full-time, locally-hired employees.

Journal Category:

Renewable Energy Tax Credits

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