Tax Breaks & Subsidies
According to various reports these incentives were scrapped as many developers took incentives to save tax and after the completion of incentives either neglected or abandoned the wind farms altogether.
A new electricity cooperative dedicated to “green” energy cleared a major hurdle when it received nearly $32 million in tax-free bonding authority from the federal government for a wind farm.
But significant hurdles remain before the co-op realizes its goal of supplying Montanans with power that doesn’t pollute.
“It’s by no means a done deal,” said Russ Doty, executive director of Green Electricity Buying Cooperative.
THE nation's carbon offset industry is booming. ... Total Environment Centre spokeswoman Jane Castle said a stricter accreditation system was required to regulate the burgeoning sector.
Tree planting was regarded as one of the least reliable methods, she said.
"A lot [of companies] are selling trees without accreditation. Their claims of carbon neutrality are not accredited or monitored," she said.
"It's very anarchic at the moment. There are many companies making a lot of money. Purchasing offsets should be the last resort if people and companies want to reduce emissions."
Australian Consumers' Association spokeswoman Ria Voorhaar said the carbon offsetting industry must be better regulated.
The $53,500 grant is being dispensed as part of the Value Added Agriculture Product Market Development Grant Program. The money will fund a feasibility study of wind energy including wind testing using altimeter.
Efforts to put a wind turbine on the campus of Holy Name Central Catholic Junior Senior High School earned a major boost last week with the award of $575,000 from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.
The grant will cover a big chunk of the project’s $1.6 million cost, and Stephen A. Perla, superintendent of the Diocese of Worcester Catholic Schools, says he is optimistic about raising the remaining $1 million.
Fritz Noble, vice president of real estate and development for Wintec Energy, thinks the industry ultimately cannot run on the production tax credit alone, but will be propelled by the state renewable energy standards. In the meantime, he predicts a lull in 2013. "A one-year extension just prolongs the uncertainty," he said.
Federation president Johannes Lackmann said investment in renewable energy sources turbines had actually fallen in 2007 and called on the German government to do more to stimulate its growth.
"The government's current provisions are insufficient to continue the successful course of recent years," he said.
Tax breaks and other subsidies that renewable energy sources receive in Germany are due to be gradually phased out over the next few years, which "green" producers say will erode their already weak competitiveness compared to traditional energy sources such as coal and nuclear power.
"There are significant impacts on the rural economy and the rural environment, all of which probably weren't intended when these things were thought up," he told an event at the Conservative Party conference. "It is not very green to be blighting the economy in one area."
His comments came as Greg Barker promised that the Government was dealing with the "never-ending gravy train of green subsidies".
The state Senate refused Monday to re-open debate on Sen. Frank Kloucek's proposed tax break for noncommercial wind-energy systems.
The legislation failed on the first attempt on Friday, when Lt. Gov. Dennis Daugaard broke a 17-17 tie by voting against it.
An attempt to reconsider the bill on Monday fell short 17-18, as Sen. Jim Bradford, R-Pine Ridge, switched from yes to no.
At Katana Summit, Kevin L. Strudthoff, the president and chief executive, said that his industry's problem was probably similar to the situation of the domestic solar panel industry. In fact, the American wind industry is also subsidized, mostly through a production tax credit, but by all accounts the scale of Chinese subsidies is far larger.
"Our government is not good at picking winners and losers in the marketplace but has certainly proved it is good at wasting taxpayer dollars," Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio and chairman of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee's subcommittee on regulatory affairs, stimulus oversight and government spending, said on Thursday.
The green energy sector has a lot riding on 2009. Policymakers from Washington to Beijing have pledged billions of dollars in "cleantech" investment to jump-start the depressed global economy and create millions of new low-carbon jobs. ...As with the solar industry, wind power has been hit by a sudden slowdown in private sector investment as credit has dried up and the price of oil has fallen from its mid-2008 high. The industry hopes public spending will help fill the gap until the global economy gets back on its feet.
The government support - which includes loan guarantees, cash grants and contracts that require electric customers to pay higher rates - largely eliminated the risk to the private investors and almost guaranteed them large profits for years to come. The beneficiaries include financial firms like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, conglomerates like General Electric, utilities like Exelon and NRG - even Google.
One of the world's largest solar farms will soon rise on Sarnia's outskirts, and other sun-reliant green energy ventures are in the works for sunny Southwestern Ontario.
The Ontario government has approved an energy deal with OptiSolar Farms Canada to build a 400-hectare mass of solar panels that will produce 40 megawatts of electricity -- enough to supply 6,000 homes.
A key to the project was the government's deal to pay 42 cents a kilowatt-hour -- nearly four times what's paid for other green-generated electricity, such as from wind turbines -- to the solar company.
That CBO report said energy-related tax breaks cost $20 billion in 2011 and 68 percent of them went to renewable energy, while only 15 percent went to fossil fuels. ..."we're subsidizing today's relatively mature onshore wind technology by a larger proportion than we did when it was in its infancy. That makes no sense, especially in the current environment."
In a remote desert spot in northern Nevada, there is a geothermal plant run by a politically connected clean energy start-up that has relied heavily on an Obama administration loan guarantee and is now facing financial turmoil.
The company is Nevada Geothermal Power, which like Solyndra, the now-famous California solar company, is struggling with debt after encountering problems at its only operating plant.
The Texas attorney general is looking at tax breaks for wind farms, and early signs are he doesn't think the law allows them.
"Fixtures and improvements owned by the wind turbine company as personal property would not be 'real property' that may be the subject of a tax-abatement agreement," according to a legal opinion issued by Attorney General Greg Abbott on Jan. 29.
The wind industry wants a another chance.
"We have asked the attorney general to review it and take a second look," said Paul Sadler, executive director of The Wind Coalition. "If they will not, it may be necessary to tweak it in the next legislative session."
FOWLER -- Orion Energy LLC is moving closer to getting its Benton County wind farm project off the ground.
The seven-member Benton County Council voted unanimously Thursday morning to approve a resolution that designates York and Richland townships as economic revitalization areas.
That action clears the way for the council to consider a 10-year tax abatement for Orion. The company is planning to place a maximum of 135 electricity-generating wind turbines on farmland in the two townships in the northwest part of the county.
While Ohio Governor Ted Strickland touted elimination of tangible personal property taxes for wind and solar companies Tuesday, that prospect didn't sit well with representatives of the entities that stand to lose up to $1.4 million in first-year tax revenue if the Buckeye Wind project gains approval to construct 70 turbines in Champaign County from the Ohio Power Siting Board this year.