Sen. Carper Hails Report on Wind Power Potential, Calls for Extension of Tax Credits

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), member of the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works, hailed a new report released by Environment America, More Wind, Less Warming, that underscores the potential wind energy holds in America as a clean, domestic energy source. Sen. Carper also called for a meaningful extension of the tax credits that are crucial to the wind energy industry’s future.

“The latest report on wind power from Environment America reminds us of the great potential offshore wind has to protect our environment, grow our economy and bolster our energy security,” Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) said. “If we are serious about tapping this clean, domestic form of energy, we must foster investment by the energy companies looking to harness it. The best way to do this is by extending the investment and production tax credits, but the extension must be long enough for companies to seize on the incentive – especially for new start-up industries like offshore wind.  This report reflects what I have been saying for years: our nation’s fledgling offshore wind industry needs certainty beyond a year to make the investments necessary to build and operate the wind turbines off our shores.  As Congress amends our tax code now and into the future, I will continue to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle on providing long-term tax certainty for the first investors of offshore wind energy.” 

In 2013, Sen. Carper, who is also a member of the Senate Finance Committee, was joined by Susan Collins (R-Maine) to introduce the Incentivizing Offshore Wind Power Act, which would provide a long-term extension of the investment tax credit for the first 3,000MW of offshore wind generated in this country. Sen. Carper offered this same text as an amendment earlier this year along with Sens. Collins, Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Angus King (I-Maine), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and Jack Reed (D-R.I.).

Among other findings, Environment America’s report reveals that expanding wind power across the country could cut as much global warming pollution as 254 coal plants produce in a year and if wind power kept its recent pace of development, it could supply 30 percent of the nation’s electricity needs by 2030, providing more than enough carbon reductions to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan, and a third of the reductions the U.S. committed to achieving in its agreement with China.

Environment America is the national federation of statewide, citizen-funded advocacy organizations working for a cleaner, greener, healthier future.