Some clean energy jobs will disappear from the Pacific Northwest in 2013. Industry leaders say that’s a consequence of letting a wind tax credit expire on Monday.
Wind developers say the production tax credit is critical to the growing industry. But critics of the credit say taxpayers should not subsidize wind energy.
The tax credit works like this: Wind producers receive 2.2-cents for each kilowatt-hour of electricity they create. And without this subsidy, analysts predict wind construction will come to a halt. Right now, no new construction is planned through 2013 in the Pacific Northwest.
Tom Vinson is with the American Wind Energy Association, a trade group. He says he hopes the production tax credit will be included in a broader financial package in 2013. “It is important to keep the industry growing and keep the investment going and keep job creation.”
Vinson says wind energy development will slow down. That’s because Congress has created so much uncertainty by taking so long to decide whether to extend the credit. The association has outlined a plan to phase out the production tax credit in six years.
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