Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5) has introduced H.R. 2412, the New Energy for America Act, which would extend Section 25D of the federal tax code for residential energy efficient property, as well as the Section 48 commercial investment tax credits (ITC) through 2021.
In introducing his legislation, Congressman Thompson, a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee, said a five-year extension of the ITC will give the solar industry time to reach “grid parity” in most US electricity markets.
The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) announced its support for the legislation, saying it will provide a boost to the US economy, while also helping to fight pollution and climate change.
The SEIA cited the following economic and environmental benefits that have been realized as a result of the solar ITC:
- More than 97 percent of all installed solar capacity in the United States has come online since the ITC was extended in 2006. Today, 20 states have topped 100 MW in cumulative capacity. Only one state had that much solar in 2006.
- More than $71 billion has been invested in solar installations nationwide, with $66 billion of that total coming since 2006.
- More than 150,000 new solar jobs have been created since 2006.
- The ITC provides important market certainty, encouraging companies to make long-term investments that drive competition and technological innovation, while lowering costs to consumers and spurring the economy.
- Because of the certainty provided by the ITC and other stable public policies, solar installations have exploded, growing by more than 1,600 percent over the past decade – a compound annual growth rate of 76 percent.
- In 2014, 32 percent of all new electric generating capacity came from solar energy, helping to fight pollution and climate change.
The New Energy for America Act would also extend the ITC credits for other clean energy technologies, such as fuel cells, stationary microturbines, combined heat and power, small wind and geothermal heating and cooling.
H.R. 2412 has been referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means.