American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012: Extends Production Tax Credit for Wind and Many Other Cleantech Tax Incentives


On January 1, 2013, the Senate and the House of Representatives passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (“ATRA”), averting the so-called “fiscal cliff.” The legislation, which was signed by President Obama, extends numerous energy-efficiency and renewable energy deductions and credits, including the “production tax credit” (the “PTC”) under Section 45 of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”) for wind power and other forms of non-solar renewable energy.


The PTC, which is determined based on the amount of electricity sold to an unrelated taxpayer which is produced at a qualified renewable energy facility over a 10-year period beginning on the date the facility is placed in service, allows owners of the qualified facilities to offset federal income taxes with the credits generated from the sale of this electricity. ATRA extends the PTC for wind and other non-solar renewable energy sources for an additional year. Importantly, ATRA treats a facility as an eligible facility with respect to which the owner has “begun construction” prior to January 1, 2014.

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