Renewable energy developers believed to have dodged a bullet in the Senate’s tax reform bill face newfound concerns as the upper chamber works toward expected final passage this week. While the Senate bill preserves important Production Tax Credits (PTCs) that had been significantly rolled back in the House, it also contains a provision which would severely undercut the value of tax equity credits relied upon by institutional investors to justify upfront investments in wind and solar projects. Continue Reading “Base Erosion Tax” Poses Newfound Threat to Wind and Solar Development

Late last night, the Senate Finance Committee voted its massive tax overhaul bill out of committee, retaining Production Tax Credits (PTC) important to the wind industry. The House version, which cleared the lower chamber earlier in the day, significantly scaled back these credits.

After taking a week off to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, the full Senate is expected to Continue Reading Senate Battle Over PTC Heating Up

As expected, the U.S. House of Representatives passed its massive tax overhaul plan today, largely along party lines.  The House package significantly scales back important production tax credits (PTCs) which renewable industry supporters believe have jump-started new investment.  All eyes now turn to the Senate as a backstop to keep these incentives in place. Continue Reading House Passes Tax Overhaul Plan, PTC Cuts Intact

Last night the Senate Finance Committee released its own tax overhaul bill, which will be taken up next week by the committee.  The legislation retains important tax credits for wind developers, setting up a likely showdown with the House of Representatives during conference committee negotiations over the legislation before the end of the year.

The Production Tax Credit (PTC) enjoys outspoken support from an important bloc of Republican Finance Committee members, including Continue Reading Senate Version of Tax Bill Retains Incentives for Renewables

NOTE: An earlier draft of this update indicating that the FAA policy was still under consideration was inadvertently published last week. That draft was out of date and should not be relied on as a statement of FAA policies currently under consideration.

Changes to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) policy concerning the issuance of Determinations of No Hazard to Air Navigation (DNHs) under discussion late last year would have had profound and potentially adverse repercussions on wind development projects nationwide. Fortunately, Continue Reading FAA Changes Would Have Disrupted Financing of Wind Development Projects Nationwide

energy_solarSuniva, Inc., a bankrupt U.S. producer of crystalline silicon photovoltaic (CSPV) cells, filed a petition with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) seeking relief from the effects of importation of foreign manufactured CSPV cells and modules. Suniva requests relief in the form of a minimum price for solar modules imported into the United States and imposition of an additional four-year tariff on all imported CSPV cells and modules that would establish a price-per-watt for inbound foreign competitors double that of current levels.

The requested relief calls for Continue Reading Proposed Tariffs Could Dramatically Affect Expansion of U.S. Solar Industry

Horn_Robert sachs_adam2016In the name of job creation, the Trump Administration is attempting to single-handedly bring back the coal industry via executive action.  But while the president may be scoring political points in coal country, as a practical matter that’s really not where energy sector job growth will come from in the next few years.

Nevertheless, the past several months have seen a resurgence of the long dormant coal industry.  Hampered by a number of factors Continue Reading Around the Horn: Trump’s Support for Coal and the Future of Renewables

energy_solarToday we highlight the Quadrennial Energy Review’s (“QER”) focus on grid modernization through increased renewable generation and its identification of opportunities to improve development, project financing, access, and the siting process. Part I of our series focused on “infrastructure challenges,” namely transmission and distribution and storage.

Renewable Generation Development

QER 1.2 dedicates significant analysis to renewable generation based on Federal environmental objectives. To encourage the deployment of clean energy generation, it recommends Continue Reading “Transforming the Nation’s Electricity System.” Part II: Renewable Generation

Illinois sealOn December 7, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law Senate Bill 2814. This bill adds a zero-emission facility standard to Illinois’ existing Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), protects funds dedicated to RPS compliance, and directs the Illinois Power Agency to conduct procurements for electricity generated by new wind and solar projects. The full client alert is available here on Husch Blackwell’s Energy and Natural Resources page.

Trump_&_ClintonAs the presidential election season enters its final, frenzied phase, it has become readily apparent that which of the two candidates is elected as the new the President of the United States on November 8 will have a monumental impact on the nation’s energy future.  Although Democrats and Republicans traditionally differ on their energy views, policy experts have stated that the sharp disconnect between Hilary Clinton’s and Donald Trump’s competing plans concerning energy and climate change is nothing short of historic.  Continue Reading Clinton’s and Trump’s Energy Plans Emphasize Divide