Aerials of U.S.-Canada Border Along The Niagara River

Renewables are making large gains globally, but if they are to continue grabbing market share from fossil fuels, they will require reliable policy backing, according to International Energy Agency Executive Director Maria Van Der Hoeven. The IEA’s 2013 Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report maintains a positive outlook for growth in renewables worldwide. “Despite a difficult economic… Keep reading →

The wind industry privately worries that MLPs are a bargaining chip for their tax credit.

Master limited partnerships are currently the policy du jour in Washington. And unlike the hollow “momentum” earlier this year for a carbon tax, MLPs actually have bipartisan support and legislative potential. Keep reading →

After a tough period when Chinese and Vietnamese companies dumped cheap products into the country and the production tax credit looked like it might be toast, things are looking up for the U.S. wind tower sector.

One indication: Broadwind Energy said on Tuesday that a new $14 million order means that its Abeline, Texas, plant is pretty much full up for the year. Keep reading →

We already knew it was a record-breaking year for the U.S. wind power industry in 2012, as fears that the production tax credit for wind would vanish drove installations at a frenzy pace toward the end of the year. Some 8,380 megawatts of the year’s 13,124 megawatts of generating capacity went online in the fourth quarter, which means that nearly 15 percent of the total wind power capacity ever installed in the country happened in the last three months of 2012.

But which states did the most damage in the year? A new release from the American Wind Energy Association breaks it down. Keep reading →

They took it right to the edge, but the US wind energy business managed to rescue the production tax credit around which many of their projects and manufacturing investments are structured. In the process Capitol Hill supporters of the sector rescued a claimed 37,000 jobs and the supply chain for a rapidly expanding form of power generation.

The effort to rescue the wind energy PTC and the also-extended investment tax credit (ITC) was not directly linked to the fiscal cliff debate, but became intertwined with the calendar-driven effort to prevent earlier tax cuts and credits from expiring without any replacement policy in place. The inclusion of the wind energy PTC, which was thought to be sufficiently likely to expire that companies spent significant sums as they rushed to turn on wind farms before the end of 2012, speaks to the expanded power of the wind industry groups in Washington, DC and the increased centrality of the wind energy business to major infrastructure and engineering firms with substantial US manufacturing operations including GE Energy, Siemens and Vestas. Keep reading →

The wind industry has a deal for lawmakers: they’re willing to sacrifice their tax credit for deficit reduction, as long as it’s not snatched away too quickly. Wind turbine makers say they’re OK with an industry plan to gradually phase out its tax credit as part of the fiscal cliff discussion — provided lawmakers extend it for another six years. The wind industry has been fretting that its tax credit – which covers about 30% of the cost of wind power — won’t be renewed when it expires at the end of 2012. The industry says up to 37,000 jobs are on the line if the credit expires. In a bid to prevent that from happening, the American Wind Energy Association said last week that the industry can compete against other power sources like coal and natural gas by 2018, so long as the credit doesn’t disappear before then.

The American Wind Energy Association and Solar Energy Industries of America, the leading groups for the most important renewable energy industries in the country, were feeling pretty good in the wake of Tuesday’s elections.

Both groups issued press releases on Wednesday, with the AWEA putting its focus on the success of candidates who supported the production tax credit, which the organization now believes has a good chance of being extended before its Jan. 1, 2013, expiration, and the SEIA taking advantage of the opportunity to heap copious praise upon President Obama. Keep reading →

Warren Buffett bought himself two more wind farms on Sunday.

OK, it’s a little more roundabout than that. MidAmerica Wind bought two Southern California wind farm projects, part of the sprawling Alta Wind Energy Center – and by “projects” we mean they aren’t operating yet, but are expected to be by the end of the year. (They better be, in order to qualify for expiring federal tax breaks.) Keep reading →

Companies are at the leading edge of wind globally, not least in the US. Starbucks recently sent a joint letter with 18 other US companies to Congress to request an extension of the Production Tax Credit which has helped grow installed capacity.

Ben & Jerry’s, Clif Bar, Johnson & Johnson, Levi Strauss & Co, The North Face, Sprint, Starbucks, Symantec, Timberland and Yahoo! are just a selection of household corporate names that understand the value of a sustainable wind industry to the consumer and the bottom line. Keep reading →

During this year’s presidential campaign, the renewable energy industry and the tax credits that support it have become a hot political topic.

Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney caused a ripple of anxiety in the US wind industry when he said he would not extend the Production Tax Credit that has helped grow the wind industry to 50GW of installed capacity. Keep reading →

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