Tax Breaks & Subsidies
Senators Bennet and Udall have consistently backed extension of three little-known items: the Production Tax Credit, the Investment Tax Credit, and Section 1603 grants. These notorious mechanisms provide billions in subsidies to the least efficient, most hated, and most environmentally destructive type of power generation: industrial wind projects.
According to Mr. Obama, that future apparently requires a clumsy array of expensive federal subsidies. The wind production tax credit (PTC) devotes more than $1 billion a year to support wind-power projects, rewarding them for every kilowatt-hour of electricity they generate, not for providing electricity inexpensively or devising cheaper ways to operate.
The vote on the PTC will be a big moment for the GOP. One reason the party lost its way in the Bush years is that it became a vehicle for special business pleading instead of free markets. If the party is serious about tax reform, deficit reduction and ending corporate welfare, then it will vote to take wind power off the taxpayer dole.
Wind power is horizon blight.
It's also what economists call rent-seeking. "Rents" are what you get when you're a political crony and you convince the government to take money from others and give it to you. The country would be better off with fewer rent-seekers feeding on the federal budget.
Because wind-powered electricity is so expensive, more than half of the 50 states have passed renewable energy mandates that require utilities to purchase wind and solar power-a de facto tax on utility bills. And don't forget subsidies to build transmission lines to deliver wind power to the electric grid.
What have taxpayers received for this multibillion-dollar "investment"?
The Energy Information Agency of the Department of Energy published figures in August 2011 showing that for the fiscal year 2010, the federal subsidies were as follows: Hydro received 1.8 percent of the federal subsidies for renewable energy; nuclear received 21 percent; coal received 10 percent and wind a whopping 42 percent.
The attractions of the "anti-wind" letter are emphasised by the apparent difficulty in organising a counter-demonstration of support. Heaton-Harris took just three days to collect his signatures; weeks later, nobody has got an equal number of MPs to sign support for onshore wind - although a group of pro-renewable interests is mustering backing from more predictable interests, including renewable companies and environmental campaigners.
Let's not even think about putting this tax break for the rich in the middle of an extension of a tax deduction for working Americans this week. Let's focus on reducing the debt, increasing expenditure for research, and getting rid of the subsidies.
Twenty years is long enough for a wind production tax credit for what our distinguished Nobel prize-winning Secretary of Energy says is a ‘mature technology.'
The renewable energy lobby likes to portray itself as an upstart industry, one that is grappling with big business and the entrenched interests of the hydrocarbon sector. But billions of dollars in 1603 grants - all of it exempt from federal corporate income taxes - is being used to fatten the profits of some of the world's biggest companies.
As the federal Energy Department blew billions of dollars on green-energy pipe dreams, the Labor Department shoveled away its share, too, dumping $162 million into so-called "green" jobs.
That is, for 1,336 people as of October.
Another important point about this "independent analysis" is the standard by which the Obama administration defines success. Creating jobs in the United States is not a requirement for success ...According to Daley, "The President is committed to investing in clean energy because he understands that the jobs developing and manufacturing these technologies will either be created here or in other countries."
Granite Reliable's wind farm is not proven, and Granite Reliable is a limited liability company, which provides broad investor protection if the company goes down. What is the justification for risking $135 million in public money, especially on a company with access to so much private cash? Apparently, the justification is that Obama likes "green power" and wants to associate himself with it.
Republicans argue that it’s inappropriate for the Obama campaign to raise money from a donor who has benefited directly from the Recovery Act.
Missouri Republican Party executive director Lloyd Smith compared the situation to the Solyndra affair, in which the Obama administration reportedly rushed federal support to a green-energy firm that subsequently collapsed.
Queensland families and retirees are worried about the rising costs created by a carbon tax, saying they 'cannot be taxed any further'.
The political willingness to support renewable energy may be peaking as politicians realize that renewable energy systems are not the answer they were looking for.
The Maine Public Utility Commission's analysis showed that the first two years of the increased renewable energy mandate added $7 million to Maine ratepayer's electric bills.
Rather than continue the automatic increases to the renewable energy source mandate, we think there is a better approach by allowing consumer choice while still supporting renewable energy development.
Green Mountain Power doesn't have to worry about the cost-effectiveness of its project. It will sell the power to its customers ...The cost, however ridiculous it may be, will be added to its cost of service. The Public Service Board will let GMP add a 9 percent profit margin, and send out the bills.
Will Freedom get the tax relief it has wanted all along? What will happen to our taxes next year when, for the first time, the turbine values are added to the school district assessment, increasing Freedom's share of the school budget, while reducing state aid to education? The answers are painfully obvious.
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But while Exergy does not speak for the entire Idaho wind industry, the company's abrupt about-face undermines the developers' case for rebates. Not to mention undermining one company's credibility at the Statehouse.
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Spain's politicians, in something of an emergency move, have just stuck Spanish households and small businesses with a hefty new energy tax to go into effect tomorrow. Yeah, that oughta help matters.
This latest in a series of energy tax hikes is intended to help pay down the burst renewabubble, which they also realize they can't just end but must perpetuate.