Article

Billions in Texas wind power waiting for final go-ahead from feds

Billions of dollars in Texas wind projects remain in a holding pattern, just waiting for the final go-ahead on the federal production tax credit.

Billions of dollars in Texas wind projects remain in a holding pattern, just waiting for the final go-ahead on the federal production tax credit.

John Billingsley, CEO, chairman and founder of Tri Global Energy, has nine wind farms totaling 1,240 megawatts and $2 billion in investments that qualify for the wind production tax credit.

All have started "significant" construction, such as site excavation, road work, transformer installation or other work.

The wind production tax credit was renewed in mid-December and expired again Dec. 31, giving contractors just a few weeks to start construction before it ended again.

The final piece of the puzzle is a clarification from the Internal Revenue Service on what constitutes a start of construction. The work had to start in 2014 in order to qualify.

"The whole industry is waiting on that and hopefully it's coming," Billingsley said. "Every body's thinking it could be any day now."

That's the "starting gun" for Dallas-based Tri Global Energy to get started with everything from private equity financing to the wind turbine manufacturers.

"None of those big companies are going to start their due diligence until... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Billions of dollars in Texas wind projects remain in a holding pattern, just waiting for the final go-ahead on the federal production tax credit.

John Billingsley, CEO, chairman and founder of Tri Global Energy, has nine wind farms totaling 1,240 megawatts and $2 billion in investments that qualify for the wind production tax credit.

All have started "significant" construction, such as site excavation, road work, transformer installation or other work.

The wind production tax credit was renewed in mid-December and expired again Dec. 31, giving contractors just a few weeks to start construction before it ended again.

The final piece of the puzzle is a clarification from the Internal Revenue Service on what constitutes a start of construction. The work had to start in 2014 in order to qualify.

"The whole industry is waiting on that and hopefully it's coming," Billingsley said. "Every body's thinking it could be any day now."

That's the "starting gun" for Dallas-based Tri Global Energy to get started with everything from private equity financing to the wind turbine manufacturers.

"None of those big companies are going to start their due diligence until they get this clarification from the IRS," Billingsley said.

The production tax credit, which pays wind producers 2.3 cents per kilowatt hour, faces a tough political road with a Republican-controlled Congress so it's uncertain whether it will be renwed again in 2015. One effort to extend it another five years failed in the Senate in January, according to Inside Climate News.

In the meantime, Tri Global has its sights set on even bigger things. The company builds community wind farms where landowners lease their land, similar to how oil and gas leases pool mineral owners together. Everyone gets royalties whether they have a wind farm on their property or not.

The company has 600,000 acres leased now, mostly in West Texas and the Panhandle. But Billingsley says they want to lease in Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and Nebraska.
And, he's got some bold new ideas for residential solar, too. 


Source: http://www.bizjournals.com/...

FEB 17 2015
http://www.windaction.org/posts/42185-billions-in-texas-wind-power-waiting-for-final-go-ahead-from-feds
back to top