With an important tax credit integral to the growth of Vermont's renewable energy industry set to expire at the end of the year, Rep. Peter Welch is fighting to extend it.
At a Ways and Means Committee hearing this morning, Welch made the case for extending the Production Tax Credit (PTC) through 2016. The PTC provides tax incentives to companies that generate wind, geothermal and other types of renewable energy and is scheduled to expire at the end of 2012.
"Every day that Congress allows the extension of the PTC to hang in limbo costs the U.S. investments in renewable energy, our place in the competitive global market and the creation of new green jobs," Welch said.
Nationwide, the PTC has spurred domestic manufacturing, creating 75,000 jobs in the wind industry alone. Due in part to the PTC, Vermont was the second fastest growing state for wind installations in 2011 -- growing at over 650%.
In his testimony, Welch highlighted the work of Hinesburg-based NRG Systems, which provides wind developers, utilities and turbine manufacturers with tools to measure wind. Because of the uncertainty facing the PTC, NRG has reported a 50 percent drop in U.S. orders.