Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today introduced legislation to promote the use of renewable energy, increase carbon reduction, spur solar innovation, and invest in thousands of jobs. The Renewable Energy Extension Act would extend clean energy tax incentives set to begin expiring at the end of this year and ensure continued deployment, growth, and innovation of these technologies.
“Protecting the environment is good for our health and our economy. These tax incentives help us achieve these goals by increasing commercial and residential solar use, reducing carbon emissions, and creating good-paying jobs,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “My legislation would ensure that Nevada remains a national leader in solar energy and that companies continue to make strong investments in solar energy and innovation for years to come.”
U.S. Representative Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) introduced a bipartisan companion bill in the House of Representatives.
“Clean energy is our future – a crucial part of deploying green energy that creates jobs, reduces our dependence on foreign energy sources, improves our environment. That’s why I am proud to introduce the Renewable Energy Extension Act, a bill to extend the energy investment tax credit at 30 percent for five years,” said Congressman Thompson. “This tax credit is a key part of increasing the use of clean energy technologies and it helps our environment. And we know it works, the ITC produced billions in investment last year alone and I’m proud to introduce this important bill to help green our tax code today.”
Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) joined Cortez Masto in introducing this legislation.
The Renewable Energy Extension Act of 2019 would provide a 5-year extension of the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) and residential renewable energy tax credit for solar, delaying the incremental phase out that Congress passed in 2015. In addition to solar, the bill extends the ITC for other clean energy technologies set to phase out, such as fiber-optic solar, fuel cells, small wind, microturbines, combined heat and power, and geothermal heat pumps. In July, nearly 1,000 solar companies called on Congress to extend the solar ITC.
Cortez Masto has been a strong advocate in favor of using demonstrated tax incentives to promote renewable energy. In June, she led nineteen of her Senate colleagues in sending a letter to the Senate Finance Committee Chair and Ranking Member, urging the Committee to prioritize and preserve existing tax credits like the ITC and residential renewable energy tax credit.