PRESS RELEASE: Wind energy policy advances in U.S. Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support
Washington, D.C, Aug. 2, 2012 – Extension of critical tax relief to save 37,000 jobs in wind energy and continue growing U.S. manufacturing advanced in the Senate Finance Committee today with strong bipartisan support.
By an overwhelming bipartisan margin of 19-5, the committee passed an extenders package that included an extension of the wind energy Production Tax Credit (PTC). On critical amendment votes, all the Democratic members and GOP Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Pat Roberts (R-KS) supported the extension of the PTC.
Also in the committee's markup is an extension of the Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which provides an incentive for the development of offshore and community wind projects.
"We applaud the committee for this act of leadership to move critical policies forward in a difficult environment," said Denise Bode, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association. "This was an extremely important step to provide critical certainty to keep people at work in wind energy manufacturing and construction."
Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) included an extension of the PTC and the ITC for wind projects started in 2013 in the modified chairman's mark (essentially a revised base bill) of the Family and Business Tax Cut Certainty Act of 2012.
Introducing amendments in support of the wind PTC were Sens. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), John F. Kerry (D-MA), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) and Kent Conrad (D-ND).
Meanwhile, three senators from each party who are not members of the committee submitted a letter yesterday to committee leaders in favor of wind energy. Sens. Michael Bennet (D-CO), John Boozman (R-AR), Scott Brown (R-MA), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Jerry Moran (R-KS), and Mark Udall (D-CO) urged the committee to extend the PTC in the markup.
The PTC drives up to $20 billion a year of private investment into U.S. wind farms, creating demand that allows U.S. manufacturing to compete in a global market. According to Navigant Consulting, 37,000 jobs will be lost by early 2013 if Congress lets the PTC expire at the end of 2012.An extension of the PTC enjoys widespread, bipartisan support from groups as diverse as the National Governors Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, Edison Electric Institute, the American Farm Bureau Federation, environmentalists, labor unions, and others. Members of the House and Senate from both parties have indicated their agreement that the PTC should be renewed.
AWEA is the national trade association of America's wind industry, with more than 2,500 member companies, including global leaders in wind power and energy development, wind turbine manufacturing, component and service suppliers, and the world's largest wind power trade show, the WINDPOWER Conference & Exhibition, which takes place next in Atlanta, June 2-6, 2012. AWEA is the voice of wind energy in the U.S., promoting renewable energy to power a cleaner, stronger America. Look up information on wind energy at the AWEA website. Find insight on industry issues at AWEA's blog Into the Wind. Join AWEA on Facebook. Follow AWEA on Twitter.
Get Email Updates
Did you know?
The U.S. wind energy industry could support 500,000 jobs, according to the Department of Energy's 20 percent Wind Energy by 2030 studyTweet this
- Tweet this
American wind is one of the most affordable forms of new energy. It costs less than new coal or nuclear energy. It competes with natural gas in wind-rich regions.Tweet this
The U.S. wind industry supported more than 75,000 jobs in 2011. A full 30,000 of those jobs were in manufacturing.Tweet this
Top states for installed new wind capacity during the third quarter include Kansas, (473 MW); Oregon (333 MW); Texas (281 MW); Oklahoma (229 MW); and Nevada (152 MW)Tweet this
35 percent of new U.S. electric generating capacity came from wind from 2007-2011, with less than 15 percent of new capacity coming from coal, and less than 1 percent coming from nuclear.Tweet this
Over 40,000 wind turbines across the US can now produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of all the homes in MI, OH, IA, CO, and NV combined.Tweet this
Driving today costs over 15 cents/mi for gas, while running an electric car on wind power costs less than 3 cents/mi. It's like paying 70 cents a gallon at the pump & saving a driver over $1,400/year.Tweet this
- Tweet this
- Tweet this