Sen. Carper Supports Energy Tax Credit Proposal to Help Delaware

WASHINGTON – Energy tax incentives to help Delaware’s wind, solar and other alternative energy projects passed the United States Senate tonight with Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) voting for a proposal, contained in a broad tax cut package, to help boost America’s alternative energy production, lower energy costs and create good-paying jobs.

“Delawareans are feeling the energy pinch – whether it’s at the gas pump or paying energy bills at home,” Sen. Carper said. “Finally, the Congress has responded with a common-sense approach to help ease energy costs, boost domestic and alternative energy production, and produce new jobs in Delaware and nationwide.”

Sen. Carper stressed that several Delaware operations could benefit from this $17 billion energy tax incentive package, including the highly anticipated Blue Water Wind’s wind farm off Rehoboth Beach and solar projects by GE Solar and SolarDock in Wilmington. In addition, Dupont and WL Gore are developing fuel cell technology, and Dupont is creating new biofuels and makes most of the materials used in solar cells.

The Tax Extenders Act (H.R. 6049) contains authorization for $800 million in new, clean renewable energy bonds to help finance facilities that generate electricity from wind, biomass, geothermal, hydropower, and from marine renewables, such as waves and tides, among others.

“Building and operating Delaware’s proposed offshore wind park would not be possible without the provisions included in this bill,” said Sen. Carper.

Delaware companies such as Dupont will benefit from the extension of biodiesel production tax credits and renewable diesel tax credits. The bill extends for three years the $1 per gallon production tax credits for biodiesel and the small biodiesel producer credit of 10 cents per gallon, and also extends for three years the $1 per gallon production tax credit for diesel fuel created from biomass.

In addition, the proposal provides a tax credit ranging from $2,500 to $7,500 for Americans who purchase certified plug-in electric vehicles, not only helping consumers who want to reduce vehicle fuel costs and pollution, but also encouraging production of a new generation of highly fuel-efficient vehicles, like the Chevy Volt.

The bill also includes provisions to encourage recycling, which saves energy. Tax credits are extended for owners making energy efficiency improvements to their homes and businesses.   And to help meet Delaware’s current energy needs, the bill provides $2.5 billion in new tax credits to create advanced coal electricity projects and certain coal gasification projects that demonstrate the greatest potential for carbon capture and sequestration technology.

Sen. Carper noted that these energy tax incentives are fully paid for with cuts in other tax breaks. Next, this legislation must go to the House of Representatives for its approval.