DOE Treasury offer up $150 million in tax credits for solar, clean energy manufacturing

A 3D solar cell protoypeIn an effort to spur more U.S.-based solar, wind and other clean energy manufacturing, the Department of Energy and the Treasury Department teamed up to offer $150 million in tax credits. Under the offer, announced today, Feb. 7, the Treasury Department is allocating credits to the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credits program that weren’t previously used.

The credit was established in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 in an attempt to foster investment and job creation in clean energy manufacturing, according to the DOE. The Section 48C Advanced Manufacturing Tax Credit originally provided a 30 percent investment tax credit and helped fund 183 domestic clean energy manufacturing facilities valued at $2.3 billion.

"The President has been clear that we have to do everything we can to boost growth and job creation today and build a more sustainable foundation for tomorrow," said Acting Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin. "Manufacturing the clean energy products of the future in America will create good, middle-class jobs right now and help lay the groundwork for the long-term resilience of our economy."

"Since 2009, the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit program has supported innovative American manufacturers that boost our nation's competitiveness in the global race for clean energy," said DOE Secretary Steven Chu in a release. "These new investments will continue that momentum, supporting the President's commitment to American-made energy, increasing energy security, and creating jobs."

Unfortunately it’s not new money for the program. The $150 million being offered were not used by the previous awardees, according to DOE. They are being allocated on a competitive basis and applications will be assessed on following criteria: commercial viability, domestic job creation, technological innovation, speed to project completion, and potential for reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, DOE said. Additional factors will include the diversity of geography, technology, project size, and regional economic development.

Eligible technologies include: Solar, wind, geothermal, or other renewable energy equipment; Electric grids and renewable energy storage; Fuel cells and microturbines; Electric and hybrid vehicle energy; Carbon dioxide capture and sequestration equipment; Equipment for refining or blending renewable fuels; Equipment for energy conservation, including lighting and smart grid technologies. Other advanced energy equipment designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions may be eligible but must be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury. 

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