Bill would consolidate 44 energy incentives into three technology-neutral provisions to promote energy independence and a low-carbon economy
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) joined Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR) and 24 colleagues to introduce legislation to support an innovative, low carbon economy through investments in clean energy. The Clean Energy for America Act would consolidate the current 44 energy incentives into three technology-neutral provisions that encourage clean electricity, clean transportation, and energy efficiency.
“Climate change poses a growing threat to our country and planet, and we must invest in clean energy to protect our future,” Klobuchar said. “The Clean Energy for America Act would help provide long term tax incentives to support clean electricity, fuel, and energy conservation efforts. We should continue to do more, not less, to provide reliable, clean, low-cost energy for all American consumers.”
“The federal tax code is woefully inadequate to address today’s energy challenges. It’s a hodgepodge of temporary credits, anchored by advantages for Big Oil, that don’t effectively move us toward the goals of reducing carbon emissions or lowering electricity bills for American families. It’s time to kick America’s carbon habit, and that means a complete transformation of the tax code to reward clean electricity, transportation and conservation,” Wyden said.
Specifically, the Clean Energy for America Act would:
- Incentivize clean electricity by providing a production tax credit (PTC) or an investment tax credit (ITC) to facilities that are at least 35 percent cleaner than average, with a maximum of a 2.4 cents per kilowatt hour PTC or a 30 percent ITC available for facilities with zero carbon emissions.
- Encourage clean transportation fuel by providing a tax credit for fuels that are at least 25 percent cleaner than average, with the maximum credit of $1 per gallon available for fuels with zero carbon emissions. The bill also eliminates the per-manufacturer cap on the tax credit for electric vehicles and extends the credit for fuel cell electric vehicles.
- Incentivize energy conservation by providing a performance-based tax credit for energy efficient homes and tax deduction for energy efficient commercial buildings. The value of the tax credit would increase as more energy is conserved.
The Clean Energy for America Act is cosponsored by Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Tom Carper (D-DE), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Angus King (I-ME), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Gary Peters (D-MI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Tina Smith (D-MN).
Text of the legislation available is here.
The Clean Energy for America Act is supported by the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE), the Alliance to Save Energy, the American Biogas Council, the American Wind Energy Association, the American Public Power Association, the Biomass Power Association, the Energy Storage Association, Growth Energy, Plug In America, the Solar Energy Industries Association, the National Hydropower Association, the Renewable Fuels Association, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, the Electric Drive Transportation Association, and the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association.
In her time in the Senate, Klobuchar has supported a comprehensive approach to combatting climate change that would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote the development of energy efficient technologies and homegrown energy resources. As a member of the Senate Climate Action Taskforce, she has fought to ensure that efforts to address the threat of climate change are a part of our nation’s energy and environmental policy. Klobuchar strongly supports the Paris Climate Agreement and has pushed the Administration to rejoin the Agreement. She has also opposed cabinet members who doubt the science of climate change and deny that it is occurring. In April, Klobuchar and Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) introduced bipartisan legislation to help rural communities access renewable energy. The Expanding Access to Sustainable Energy (EASE) Act will assist rural communities and rural electricity cooperatives overcome the barriers to renewable energy storage and grid improvements by providing access to relevant resources and expertise.