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This week, as part of its annual spending bills, Congressional negotiators worked out a narrow package of tax breaks for some types of renewable energy but purposely left other clean energy sources out of the money. On-shore wind power, small scale solar, and electric vehicles did not receive tax benefit extensions that had helped each to get off the ground, but biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel producers will receive a windfall tax credit, according to The Motley Fool.
Why This Matters: The final spending bill was not good for conservation and climate change and environmental groups are not happy. Congress made a clear choice to force the nascent solar, wind and electric vehicle industries to stand on their own two feet by refusing to extend tax breaks that had helped to boost each in their early stages and arguably are still in need of the tax breaks to ensure their continued growth. Gregory Wetstone, president of the American Council on Renewable Energy, described Congress’ failure to extend them as a “squandered opportunity” because the tax code now “will do little for renewable growth and next to nothing to address climate change,” said in a statement. It seems that Congress chose penalized those industries that had clear climate benefits, which apparently was at the behest of the White House– how Trumpy.
On-shore wind producers failed to get a meaningful extension of their tax breaks — the industry got an extension for the credits on the front end but not the back end — projects can begin construction by the end of 2020 — a full year later — and be eligible for the credit but they still must enter service by the end of 2021. Tax credits for small scale solar projects did not receive an extension so they will phase out — that tax credit provides an average benefit of $5,000 to individual households that invest in rooftop solar. And on electric vehicles (EVs), the car companies had hoped to extend the tax credit beyond the current ceiling of 200,000 per manufacturer, but that also failed. The current rule is that there is a tax credit of up to $7,500 for each of the first 200,000 EVs sold by each car company — and several companies are nearing their ceilings.
By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer Cities across the US are transitioning their buildings to clean energy, which would mean banning natural gas in new construction and promoting electric appliances. But the question remains whether or not infrastructure — foundational and historic — is ready to handle such a demand for electricity. Why this […]
As more people around the nation are taking to the roads and skies for their vaccinated vacations, one car rental company is making it easier for folks to not only travel in style, but travel green. Hertz has announced that it will be purchasing 100,000 Tesla electric vehicles by the end of 2022 alongside an […]
By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer Last year, the average American household experienced eight hours without power, as storms hammered electrical systems built with less erratic climate conditions in mind. That average outage time is double what it was five years ago. But only looking at the average obscures the experience of people who lived […]
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