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Governors' Wind Energy Coalition

December 18, 2017

Renewables angst lingers over final tax bill

Geof Koss, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 06:39:08

Despite compromise language intended to ease the potential impact of base erosion anti-abuse tax (BEAT) provisions on renewable investment, green business groups warned over the weekend that the fix will continue to inject uncertainty. While the final bill would allow key renewable tax breaks to offset up to 80 percent of the BEAT, American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) CEO Gregory Wetstone noted the “applicability of the new tax” was expanded by conferees, a change whose long-term consequences will take time to fully understand. [ read more … ]

Tax Bill Largely Preserves Incentives for Wind and Solar Power

By BRAD PLUMER, New York Times  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:36:32

The final text of the Republican tax bill made public Friday largely preserves key tax credits for wind and solar power and electric vehicles, reversing language in earlier versions that could have slowed the growth of renewable energy across the United States. The last-minute changes, made as lawmakers reconciled the House and Senate versions of the tax legislation, reflect the growing political clout of the wind and solar industries, which now provide more than 7 percent of the nation’s electricity and are two of the fastest-growing energy sources.
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U.S. Renewable Energy Industry Relieved as Republicans Keep Tax Credits

By Valerie Volcovici, Reuters  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:36:58

The U.S. renewable energy industry expressed relief after a compromise Republican tax bill released late on Friday preserved key tax credits that had been at risk of being removed, but it raised concerns about a provision that may threaten investment in the sector. The final tax bill retains the production and investment tax credits for wind and solar energy that have spurred investment in the fast-growth industries. It also eliminates the alternative minimum tax, which would have reduced the value of those credits. [ read more … ]

Clean Energy’s $12 Billion Financing Tool Spared in Tax Deal

By Ari Natter and Chris Martin, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:37:36

Congressional leaders have reached a deal preserving a $12 billion source of financing for U.S. wind and solar developers. A provision included in the sweeping overhaul released Friday evening would preserve most of the value of renewable energy tax credits that developers use to raise investments from large financial companies. The incentives had been threatened by a minimum tax on foreign transactions that was included in the bill initially passed by the Senate, limiting the amount companies could write off. The final version lets companies offset as much as 80 percent of their foreign transaction tax with renewable energy credits. [ read more … ]

Republicans include BEAT fix, drop nuclear credits in final tax bill

By Gavin Bade, Utility Dive  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:38:56

The House version, passed last month, sparked concern in renewable energy circles with provisions to cut the wind production tax credit and a $7,500 federal tax incentive for electric vehicles. The Senate version was expected to be friendlier to renewable energy, but the sector was startled by the last-minute inclusion of the BEAT provision, added on Thanksgiving eve shortly before the bill passed. The final bill allows companies to offset up to 80% of BEAT tax payments accrued due to energy tax credits. [ read more … ]

Tax Bill Boosts Oil, Gas Drilling — and Renewable Energy

By Mathew Daly, Associated Press  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:37:57

The Republicans’ tax package would boost traditional forms of energy such as oil and gas while also supporting renewable energy such as wind and solar power — and even extend a hand to buyers of electric cars. An agreement by House and Senate negotiators would open Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, while preserving tax credits for wind power and other clean energy. The bill also would extend a tax credit of up to $7,500 for purchases of plug-in electric vehicles such as the Tesla Model 3 and Chevrolet Bolt. [ read more … ]

A Look at the Corporate Winners and Losers in Final Tax Measure

By Matthew Townsend, Bloomberg  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:38:20

Oil-and-gas companies will be big winners because they pay the second-highest effective tax rate of any sector, at 37 percent, according to Bloomberg Intelligence. But many oil explorers and equipment providers won’t benefit because several have been unprofitable. Another victory: a measure that opens a portion of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas drilling, which could generate $1 billion in revenue over a decade. The renewable-energy industry avoided taking a big hit by lobbying Republicans to keep a $7,500 electric-vehicle subsidy, and a tax credit for wind-power production [ read more … ]

California regulators sign off on the state’s ambitious 2030 climate change plan

By Liam Dillon, Los Angeles Times  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:39:52

California climate regulators on Thursday approved a detailed plan for the state to meet its 2030 carbon reduction goals. The effort, known formally as the “scoping plan,” details the state’s strategies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions 40% below 1990 levels over the next 13 years as a way to fight climate change. Mary Nichols, chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board, called the plan “a visionary look at the longer term and deeper kinds of transformations that we’ll need to stabilize our climate.” [ read more … ]

California’s ambitious climate plans make ‘plenty of work for everybody’

Debra Kahn, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:40:10

California officials late last week approved a regulatory roadmap for slashing greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. Due every five years, the state’s scoping plan serves as a rough estimate of how the state will reach its economywide emissions targets — 1990 levels by 2020 and 40 percent below that by 2030. [ read more … ]

Clean Power Plan to be fully terminated in 10 months

Niina Heikkinen, E&E News reporter  •    •  Posted 2017-12-18 04:40:30

The announcement came as part of the release of the Trump administration’s overall regulatory agenda. In a news conference yesterday afternoon, President Trump touted efforts to roll back regulations. “We’re lifting restrictions on American energy, and we’ve ended the war on coal. We have clean coal — beautiful, clean coal, another source of energy,” Trump said. [ read more … ]

Note: News clips provided do not necessarily reflect the views of coalition or its member governors.