Renewable Energy Law: Federal Stimulus Provides Major Funding for Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation


The economic stimulus package passed by Congress and signed today by President Obama contains good news for supporters of renewable energy and energy conservation.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provides increased funding, extended tax incentives and outright grants to encourage renewable energy projects, energy savings and green jobs. Some of the key renewable energy features are:

• Grants for Development of Renewable Energy Facilities – Provides funding for grants of up to 30 percent of the cost of building a new renewable energy facility placed in service during 2009 and 2010 that would otherwise qualify for the investment tax credit ("ITC") or the production tax credit ("PTC").

• Renewable Energy Loan Guarantees – Establishes a temporary Department of Energy loan guarantee program for renewable energy projects, renewable energy manufacturing facilities and electric power transmission projects. Appropriates $6 billion to pay the credit subsidy costs, which is expected to support $60 billion of loan guarantees.

• Production Tax Credit Extension – Grants a three-year extension of the PTC for electricity derived from wind (through 2012) and for electricity derived from biomass, geothermal, hydropower, landfill gas, waste-to-energy and marine facilities (through 2013).

• Investment Tax Credit in Lieu of Production Tax Credit – To address financing difficulties resulting from the uncertain future tax positions of potential investors in renewable projects, the bill allows taxpayers to elect to claim the ITC in lieu of the PTC for renewable energy facilities placed in service from 2009 through 2013 (2009 through 2012 for wind).


For more information, please contact the Sustainability and Climate Change Law Practice Group at Lane Powell:

206.223.7000 Seattle

503.778.2100 Portland

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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