Economic development analyses of community wind projects have shown increases in local economic impacts to be 1.5 to 3 times those of conventional projects. Local communities, including agricultural and rural economic development interests, want the opportunity to invest in wind in their backyards. A fundamental attribute of a community wind project is that the community has a tangible interest in the project.
Wind energy is now one of the most cost-effective sources of new electricity generation, competing with new installations of other energy sources in wind-rich regions. Wind energy costs have dropped over the past few years as wind turbine technology has matured, with taller towers, and with improved wind turbine efficiency. It helps keep electric rates low and provides a hedge against fossil fuel price volatility once wind projects come on-line. What's more, utilities can lock in wind energy prices for 20 to 30 years because the fuel is free.
Today, U.S. wind power capacity represents more than 20% of the world's installed wind power. The U.S. wind industry has added over 35% of all new generating capacity over the past 5 years, second only to natural gas, and more than nuclear and coal combined -- and America leads the world in the production of small wind turbines.
“Let’s start making some priorities and find some things that we can agree on, and maybe one of them is the production tax credit. It is a market mechanism, you don’t get paid unless you produce the power, and we’re not picking winners and losers, we’re simply saying for some period of time we will provide this incentive as we scale up and get improvements in technology.” - Karl Rove
"If we cut it off cold turkey, we’re going to hurt capital formation that has already been put in place and lose a ton of money.” - Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK)
“As Members of the Freshman class, we write to you today to ask that you take up an extension of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) for wind energy as soon as possible. As you may know, this unique tax credit is only available once a power plant is up, running and selling electricity. The PTC has achieved real, measurable results, strengthened our economy, and provided opportunities for individuals to succeed. The wind industry can continue its success story with an extension of the PTC.” - Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD), Rep. Rick Berg (R-ND), Rep. Tim Griffin (R-MI-25), Rep. David Rivera (R-FL-25), Rep. Rick Crawford (R-AK-1), Rep. Steve Womack (R-AK-3), Rep. Chris Gibson (R-NY-20), Rep. Robert Dold (R-IL-10), Rep. Jim Renacci (R-OH-16), Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick (R-PA-8), Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO-4), Rep. Charles Bass (R-NH-3), Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO-3), Rep. John Runyan (R-NJ-3), Rep. Mary Ann Buerkle (R-NY-25), Rep. Mark Amodei (R-NV-2)
"I think we should do it." - Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)
“The stakes for the wind industry and the country in general will only get worse with delay. It's time to act, not politick." - Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA)
“Iowa was the first state to generate 20 percent of its electricity from wind … Now, wind supports as many as 5,000 Iowa jobs, and $11 million in annual land lease payments to Iowa farmers. This success story is spreading across the country because wind industry leaders know how to expand this business and provide more U.S. jobs. They just need Washington to provide stable, low tax rates. The Production Tax Credit means keeping investment dollars in the market place – not in the hands of government. Now is the time for stability in the wind industry and the PTC offers just that." - Rep. Steve King (R-IA)
“The certainty an extension of the PTC will provide can further spur growth in this vital sector, increase economic development, and create jobs.” - Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA)
"If we are to expect wind energy to contribute to our country's future energy needs, Congress must quickly work to reauthorize the wind production tax credit before our wind production capabilities are damaged. We ask that you move quickly to extend the production tax credit." - Sens. Moran (R-KS), John Boozman (R-AR), Scott Brown (R-MA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), John Hoeven (R-ND), and John Thune (R-SD)
"There will be savings as the industry manufactures better and when there's enough volume in wind generation. Our goal is to extend it long enough that there is certainty in the industry so it can develop on its own and we can gradually phase it (the tax credit) out. There's no doubt in my mind if we extend it that this is a job creator." - Sen. Moran (R-KS)
“The wind production tax credit comes to mind. Many of these provisions have a long lag time. I would say that this should put even more urgency behind the efforts for fundamental reform. If we can’t do that soon, we need to figure out how to give economic certainty to Americans.” - Sen. John Thune (R-SD)
"What we ought to do is have an energy bill to produce energy of all kinds, including wind energy, and it ought to be a broad, comprehensive bill." - Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas)
“The wind-power industry is an American success story that is helping us build our manufacturing base, create jobs,lower energy costs and strengthen our energy security. As a country, we should support energy diversity and development of all domestic resources, creating an “all of the above” energy strategy. To that end, our state and national energy plans have long relied on varying policies and incentives, such as the PTC and RPS, to deploy technologies that ensure a diverse domestic energy fleet.” - Gov. Branstead (R-IA)
“Just like the many other best-in-market products Kansas exports - such as wheat, cattle, oil and gas and airplanes - Kansas has world-class wind energy. Wind energy development has created thousands of construction jobs and hundreds of permanent operation and maintenance jobs in Kansas. And we are nearing 2,000 jobs in wind component manufacturing.” - Gov. Sam Brownback (R-KS)
“As a country, we have decided to support energy diversity and development of all domestic resources, creating an 'all of the above' energy strategy. The PTC plays an important role in helping to deploy technologies that ensure a diverse, domestic energy fleet … The PTC was originally developed and enacted into law with strong bipartisan support that continues today and is a tax policy that has been successful. The PTC should be evaluated in the future to determine its long-term viability; however, the credit needs to be extended immediately to create certainty today.” - Gov. Fallin (R-OK)