Nearly 1,000 companies from across the U.S. solar industry supply chain sent a letter to Congress calling for the extension of Section 48 and Section 25D solar investment tax credits (ITC).
The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) is leading a national coalition to extend the ITC, one of the most successful clean energy tax policies ever created. The ITC was passed by a Republican-controlled Congress in the 2005 Energy Policy Act and enacted by George W. Bush. It was extended in 2015 with bipartisan support.
Since then, a large majority of Americans in both parties have concluded in multiple polls that they want policies that address climate change. The ITC offers lawmakers in both parties an opportunity to say they are taking initial and meaningful steps to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.
“If you want to show a commitment to addressing climate change, you extend the solar ITC,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of SEIA. “Supporting this proven policy is the first clear victory that lawmakers can deliver to Americans on climate change. As we debate long-term solutions, now is not the time to abandon the single most successful policy on the books to deploy clean energy in the near-term.”
The ITC, which is scheduled to start stepping down at the end of 2019, has a proven track record of success. Since its initial passage, the ITC has created more than 200,000 American jobs, added $140 billion in private sector investment and grown solar deployment by 10,000%. As a result, solar reduces emissions annually. Since 2015, solar installations have doubled and there are now more than 2 million installations in all 50 states.
“Nearly 1,000 solar companies, big and small, are supporting an ITC extension because it continues to create hundreds of thousands of jobs, is driving innovation and expanding solar access for Americans,” said Lynn Jurich, co-founder and CEO of Sunrun. “Sunrun is an example of how smart policy like the ITC can work, employing over 4,000 people nationwide, installing solar on more than 240,000 homes and constantly innovating with new technology and services that benefit all energy consumers.”
The letter, which was signed by companies working in every state across a vast majority of red, blue and purple congressional districts, is the beginning of a multi-pronged advocacy campaign lead by SEIA and its partners.
“The ITC extension will help maintain a stable market for continued solar development in the utility sector,” said George Hershman, president of Swinerton Renewable Energy. “This directly translates into investments in our nation’s rural communities by supporting more jobs across the solar value chain, providing long-term energy solutions at a lower cost to ratepayers and increasing the state and local tax base. The solar ITC is a win for workers, ratepayers and for America’s energy future.”
The national coalition expects to make a significant investment in lobbying, advertising, media outreach, social media and more. The coalition will call on lawmakers to defend the 242,000 workers and 10,000 businesses in the solar industry.
To join the effort, visit seia.org/DefendTheITC and use #DefendTheITC on all social media platforms to tell lawmakers to extend the ITC.
Read more about what solar installers are doing to prepare for the ITC rampdown here.
News item from SEIA