At the last hour, well technically after it, the wind power production tax credit in the US was extended for another year. Late last night President Obama signed the new bill which extends the tax credit. The new bill also specifies that the tax credits will not only be earned by projects that are completed before the end of the year, as was the case with the old bill, but also by projects that are started before the end of the year. This was an important inclusion pushed for by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) as most wind farms take more than a year to develop.
The original tax credit was due to expire on the 31st of December 2012, and due to the fact that there was no indication that it wold be renewed the US wind industry has already slowed, with many workers in the industry being laid off. The extension should see the industry boom for another year at least.
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On news of the signing of the new bill, AWEA made a statement to the press: “America’s 75,000 workers in wind energy are celebrating tonight over the continuation of policies expected to save up to 37,000 jobs and create far more over time, and to revive business at nearly 500 manufacturing facilities across the country. The extension of the wind energy Production Tax Credit (PTC), and Investment Tax Credits for community and offshore projects, will allow continued growth of the energy source that installed the most new electrical generating capacity in America last year, with factories or wind farms in all 50 states.”
Considering Obama’s advocacy for public investment in alternative energy, and the popularity of renewable energy amongst Democratic legislators, it should have come as no surprise that the production tax credit was extended.
By. Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com