Alternative Energy Fights to Stay in Tax Bill
Call it the tax bill, tax cuts or the tax comprise – either way, if you’ve been following the latest charade in politics, you’ll know what we’re talking about here. While the attention remains on the latest tax whatever, renewable energy proponents aren’t waving their white flag quite yet in terms of the various alternative energy provisions included in the bill.
Most noticeable to the environmentalists is Section 6426 and 6427 that has been tacked on –it provides an extension of the 50 percent per gallon tax credit on liquid coal transportation fuels; for anyone who feels strongly about the environment, “liquid coal” is like a curse word – producing twice as much carbon pollution that conventional fuels. Not a good move, says Natural Resources Defense Council blogger Jim Presswood, who just wants to get that entire process out of the mix.
Section 40 is also another no-no for environmentalists. Extending the volumetric ethanol excise tax credit by only one year (rather than five), the corn ethanol tax credit will eventually save $25 billion, but could save $6 billion right now. Bloggers hoped the credit would crunch now rather than wait another year, says NRDC, but it’s a start.
Renewables, renewables, renewables – we love to talk about these projects and luckily, the bill doesn’t shy away from them either. Essentially, the Convertible Renewable Tax Incentive wouldn’t really work if this thing wasn’t extended, since the tax credits were basically worthless following the recession and the grant has only just gotten started on those renewable projects still a work in progress. Plus, it’s protecting quite a few jobs.
Without a doubt the emphasis should remain on energy efficiency, but the bill is still lacking in that department. They’ve got something in there about extending the tax credit for efficient homes, but it’s still not a complete effort when it comes to getting the United States ahead of the curve in terms of renewable energy projects.