Senate Leaders are now considering a plan to leave renewable energy out of energy legislation. There are widespread reports that a decision has been made, at least provisionally, to move energy legislation to the Senate floor without either a renewable energy standard (RPS) or a tax title that extends the Production Tax Credit (PTC).
Please contact your Senators and ask them to urge Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) to keep the RPS and the PTC extension in the Energy bill. The Energy bill is expected to be voted on in the next few weeks.
Currently, the House Energy bill contains a 15% National RPS and a 4 â€“year extension of the PTC. The Senate Energy bill does not contain an RPS or a PTC extension. The House and Senate are trying to blend the two different Energy bills. Senate leadership is debating whether or not to include the RPS and PTC in the final Energy bill.
Please contact your Senators to ensure the RPS and the extension of the PTC remain in the Energy bill. Energy legislation without these provisions would be a tremendous lost opportunity for our industry and our country.
Background on RPS.
An RPS is a flexible, market-driven policy that can ensure that the public benefits of renewable energy, such as wind, continue to be recognized as electricity markets become more competitive. The legislation would require utilities to generate or purchase 15% of electricity from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 and would allow up to 4% of the 15% requirement to be met through energy efficiency measures.
Background on PTC.
The PTC is an income tax credit of 2.0 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity produced from qualified wind energy facilities and other sources of renewable energy. The legislation would provide a 4-year extension of the PTC through December 31, 2012. The legislation maintains the inflation adjustment provision of existing law, but would cap the value of the PTC at the lesser of 2.0 cents per kilowatt-hour (plus inflation) or the equivalent of a 35 percent investment tax credit, based on project costs. The wind energy industry supports a full value, long-term PTC.