AEA: Wind PTC is "Welfare-for-Wind"


A not-for-profit organization that engages in grassroots public policy advocacy and debate concerning energy and environmental policies is arguing against the renewal of the wind production tax credit, calling the credit "taxpayer-funded welfare-for-wind."

Future of the Production Tax Credit blowing in the wind

The explosive growth of wind generation, as well as the favorable outlook for future wind generation development is the result of Renewable Portfolio Standards, not the PTC, according to the American Energy Alliance. The Alliance contends that wind energy is a mature industry whose growth has rendered the federal wind Production Tax Credit an obsolete government handout that should be allowed to expire.

The Alliance supports this claim with research conducted by David Dismukes, Associate Director and Professor at the Louisiana State University Center for Energy Studies. The research reveals that:

  • Standard & Poor's estimated as much as $150 billion in new renewable energy investment opportunities over the next 10 years even if the PTC is not renewed.
  • The "one-size-fits-all" PTC is an inefficient and expensive means of supporting wind generation that fails to recognize the industry's operational differences, and wastes limited fiscal resources by over-subsidizing projects and driving over-development.
  • The U.S. Energy Information Administration projects that even if the PTC and other incentives are eliminated, renewable generation will still be on track to rise 250 billion kilowatt hours by 2035 -- from 500 billion kilowatt hours in 2011 to approximately 750 billion kilowatt hours -- amounting to a 50 percent increase in wind generation.

First enacted in 1992, the PTC has been extended seven times and is currently under review by Congress for another potential extension. The PTC is set to expire on December 31, 2012.

For more:
- see the report

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