The debate surrounding the Production Tax Credit (PTC) intensified last quarter following several high-profile attempts by Congress to extend the credit before it expires this year.
Industry warnings of precipitous declines in clean-tech investment and imminent job losses have reached a fevered pitch. The New York Times, for example, reflexively accused budget-hawks in Congress of being preoccupied with safeguarding the dominance of the oil and gas industries.
The idea that wind, which represents less than 3% of total electricity generation in the country after huge taxpayer benefits and state mandates, could threaten the larger power market is fantasy. It demonstrates a general ignorance about wind energy’s purpose and its limited contribution to our energy portfolio.
While we might forgive a newspaper editor’s misunderstanding of the complexities of renewable energy policy, it’s quite another thing to see the same level of ignorance on display on Capitol Hill by the very people tasked with understanding and voting on these policies.