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Letter to be sent:
I am writing to encourage your support of important tax policy updates that would advance the low- and zero-carbon energy and transportation solutions necessary to confront the ever-growing threat of climate change, which threatens wildlife and communities across the country. This fall, Congress has the opportunity to drive high-impact, smart investment in energy storage, energy efficiency, electric vehicles, and clean energy through a “tax extenders” legislative package.
An immediate window is before Congress to renew and expand the federal tax credits outlined below. In doing so, Congress can help business solutions that address climate change better penetrate the market. These solutions will improve local air pollution, create jobs, and advance the U.S. towards net-zero emissions by 2050.
In order to fully scale up important clean energy technologies like solar and wind, we must make sure we can store energy across the electric grid to cover when production is low. An energy storage tax credit is one of the best ways to drive investment in new technologies and wide scale deployment. Specifically, I ask that Congress modify Sec. 48(a)(3) and Sec. 25D of the tax code to extend an investment tax credit for energy storage to spur innovation in equipment that receives, stores, and delivers energy using new and existing technologies.
Energy efficiency is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to drive down energy demand, and, in turn, climate pollution. Smart investment in energy efficiency could also reduce consumers’ energy bills and save Americans money. Specifically, I urge Congress to upgrade commercial and multifamily building efficiency by extending Sec. 179D, and to improve homeowner efficiency and incentivize efficiency in new homes by modifying Sections 25C and 45L, respectively, to reflect new technologies and market conditions.
The transportation sector is now the largest source of climate pollution in the United States. Zero- and low-emission vehicles, including electric cars, represent one of the best opportunities to significantly drive down emissions. Yet, current limits on electric vehicle credits are inadequate to cover growing demand, and much greater deployment of charging infrastructure is needed to support expanded EV ownership. I urge Congress to facilitate investment in alternative motor vehicles and alternative fuel vehicle refueling property, and provide tax breaks for qualified plug-in electric motor vehicles. This could be done by extending Sec. 30B and Sec. 30C, and by modifying Sec. 30D of the tax code.
Smart investments in clean energy through tax credits have resulted in incredible success stories. The Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) has helped spur solar energy innovation over the last decade, making it one of the fastest growing sources of energy in the U.S. Since the ITC was enacted in 2006, the U.S. solar industry has grown by more than 10,000 percent. Further, the Production Tax Credit (PTC) helped establish the booming wind energy industry and drove down costs by 69 percent over the last decade. In addition to extending these two credits to ensure competitiveness, we now need to offer the same industry-boosting support to new clean energy frontiers, such as offshore wind.
Together, these important changes can help drive important investment into climate solutions in a manner that benefits jobs and economic growth. Tax extenders policy represents one of our best and most effective near-term climate solutions. I urge Congress to make these needed changes to the tax code so that we will have access to the technology and infrastructure needed to reach zero net emissions in time to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change.