The wind energy production tax credit (PTC), considered vital by the U.S. wind energy industry for continued growth, has been extended for two years as part of an economic stimulus package recently approved by both houses of Congress and signed by President Bush. The PTC, which expired December 31, will be extended retroactively from that date to December 31, 2003 although wind energy organizations are seeking a full five-year extension contained in the larger energy bill now being debated in the Senate.
The PTC delay came as the U.S. wind industry set installation records, installing more than twice as much new generating capacity as in any previous year almost 1,700 MW. Texas, which enjoys strong state laws that encourage renewable energy, installed 915 MW of wind capacity in 2001 more than the previous record for the entire country.
Extension of the wind energy production tax credit should help several delayed windfarm projects proceed to commercialization. Photo courtesy of NEG Micon.