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Extend Clean Energy Tax Measures

By Lisa Jacobson, President, Business Council for Sustainable Energy
National Journal Energy Experts Blog
Published: August 6, 2012

The Production Tax Credit (PTC) as well as the extension of all expired and expiring tax incentives for clean energy should be a priority for Congress. Senate Finance Committee action last week demonstrated the clear bipartisan support for extending important business tax policies, including the PTC.

Smart federal tax policy has been an effective, efficient tool to encourage private sector investment, reduce costs for consumers and industry, spur technological innovation and enhance the viability and deployment of a variety of clean energy options, while assisting the natural gas, renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in adding hundreds of thousands of jobs to the U.S. economy.

By way of example, the shale gas revolution that is providing so many benefits across the United States was supported, in part, by federal tax policy; tax credits for investments that make our homes and businesses more energy efficient have helped consumers save money, helped clean energy industries become more competitive, and have successfully stimulated the energy efficiency market.

Federal tax policy has helped 1) lower the cost of wind power by more than 90%, 2) provide wind power to the equivalent of over 12 million American homes, and 3) foster economic development in all 50 states;[1]

As a result of effective tax incentives, the U.S. solar industry grew by 85 percent in Q1 2012 over the first quarter of 2011, currently employs over 100,000 American workers, and the price of a solar panel fell 47 percent since the beginning of 2011.

Continued support for clean energy tax policies, as well as other business tax incentives, is in the best interest of American taxpayers and supports a well-reasoned national energy strategy that improves our economic conditions at home and strengthens America’s competitiveness in the global marketplace.

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