Distributed Energy Resources

Bill would allow for the transfer of renewable energy tax credits

Representatives Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., and Darin LaHood, R-Ill., on May 14 introduced legislation that would allow for the transfer of renewable energy tax credits.

The Renewable Energy Transferability Act is of use to entities, including public power utilities, that would like to make investments in renewable power, but cannot under current law directly benefit from the renewable electricity production tax credit or investment tax credit.

Under the Act, any entity could transfer the value of such a credit to any other partner in the deal -- such as a contractor, product manufacturer, financier. In exchange for the credit, the entity could receive compensation.

Blumenauer’s office said in a news release that during the past 20 years, the PTC and ITC “have massively expanded the development of renewable energy across the United States.”

The release noted that a 2017 Lazard Levelized Cost of Electricity study found that wind and utility scale solar are cheaper than fossil fuel generated energy.

“As Congress phases out these credits, the complexity of the credit has challenged the renewable industry in financing new projects. To ensure that the federal investment has the greatest possible impact, the Renewable Energy Transferability Act would allow these credits to be exchanged more freely, reaching a wider base of investors. This will expand the development of renewables and lower clean energy prices for consumers,” the news release said.

Blumenauer and LaHood are members of the House Ways and Means Committee.

The full text of the bill is available here.