WASTE-TO-ENERGY NEWS
ERC Asks the President to Support Renewable Tax Credit Changes

The Energy Recovery Council joined with other renewable trade associations in sending a letter to President Obama asking him to support legislation that would allow renewable projects that have "begun construction" prior to the placed in service date to qualify for the Section 45 renewable energy production tax credit.  Many renewable power projects are unable to move forward because developers and investors are concerned that those projects cannot be completed before the renewable electricity production credit expires.  This is particularly true in the case of waste-to-energy,  biomass, hydropower, and geothermal facilities, which have longer development, permitting and construction timelines than wind energy facilities. Legislation that will allow renewable projects to go forward based on when construction begins is a major policy improvement that will allow many more clean energy projects to move forward during the statutory duration of the Section 45 Production Tax Credit.

ERC Applauds Senate Finance Committee on PTC Action

The Energy Recovery Council and three other renewable energy trade associations today commended a 19-5 vote by the Senate Finance Committee this week to extend and enhance production tax credits (PTCs) for all renewable energy sources. The tax credits are essential for the development of waste-to-energy and other clean energy-generating facilities by offsetting the high cost of construction. Yesterday’s action by the Committee will give renewable baseload technologies equitable access to this important program by allowing eligible facilities to qualify for the tax credits when construction is commenced. 

“The Energy Recovery Council commends the Senate Finance Committee for including important changes to the production tax credit that will allow all renewable technologies to benefit from this important program,” said Ted Michaels, President of Energy Recovery Council. “Modifying the definition of placed in service will provide more opportunities for waste-to-energy facilities to utilize the renewable tax credit, which will in turn drive sustainable waste management practices in the United States.” 

Baseload energy sources – which provide consistent power independent of external factors like weather or time of day – particularly rely on PTCs at a time when fuel costs are high and electricity prices are low.  These sources of energy combined produce almost 75% of the nation’s renewable electricity, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The Biomass Power Association, the National Hydropower Association, and the Geothermal Energy Association joined ERC in the joint statement.

WTE Would Receive Permanent Benefit under Obama Energy Plan

President Barack Obama today called on the country to refocus the nation's energy production on renewable sources. He specifically called for a permanent extension of the section 45 production tax credit for renewable resources, including waste-to-energy. Speaking in Florida, Obama said that this year's rising gasoline prices highlight the need to move to more renewable sources of energy.  "If we're going to take control of our energy future; if we're going to avoid these gas price spikes down the line, then we need a sustained, all-of-the-above strategy that develops every available source of American energy - oil, gas, wind, solar, nuclear, biofuels, and more."

SWANA Releases White Paper on Economic Strength of WTE

On January 9, the Solid Waste Association of North America released a white paper titled “Waste-to-Energy Facilities Provide Significant Economic Benefits”. The purpose of this white paper is to illustrate the financial success of waste-to-energy operations throughout North America. Waste-to-energy is a reliable and renewable form of energy that has become the basis for many of the most successful solid waste management systems in North America. More than 80 waste-to-energy plants throughout the United States have allowed municipalities to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and waste to landfills, while providing significant financial benefits to their communities.  The paper highlights a number of economic benefits communities achieve by investing in waste-to-energy such as additional revenues generated from the sale of recovered metals and renewable energy. These revenue streams have been used to fund other solid waste activities as well as loan re-payment.   A copy of the white paper can be found here.

ACORE's Phase II National Policy Conference: Renewable Energy in America

The Energy Recovery Council is pleased to support ACORE’s annual Phase II Policy Forum, which has never been more important. With an renewable industry whose growth and economic potential is being called into question, Phase II will be a critical meeting geared to formulate an over-arching strategy for the continued success and support of the industry. The forum will explore issues of national and energy security, economic development, capital raising, and jobs for the many under and unemployed Americans. The thought leaders from the global stage will join leaders from the national and state level to assess the status of renewable energy policy today, the range of policy options available, and help to advise on a best case policy framework for 2012 and beyond. Your attendance is critical to formulating a well-rounded energy policy for America’s future.  Please visit http://www.acorephaseii.com to register and for all the details.