What an Extension of the Solar Investment Tax Credit Would Look Like

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Nicki Zvik, Founder of Green Solar Technologies comments on the importance of extending the ITC.

Nicki Zvik, Founder of Green Solar Technologies

There’s no denying that the Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) has helped to drastically propel the solar industry forward from first an economical standpoint and, consequently, a technological standpoint. This is simply because as more people purchased solar, the more money the industry made, and the more money that could be put into research and development (and the more money the Federal and local governments would deem worth putting into R&D). So it comes as no surprise that leaders in the solar industry, as well as renewable energy advocates, would be thrilled to see an extension of the tax credit.

But what would an extension of the ITC look like in numbers?

As of now the ITC is set at 30 percent until the end of the year, meaning that those who purchase solar will get a tax credit worth 30 percent of what they paid for the system. But come 2020, the tax credit will reduce to 26 percent and eventually hold steady at 10 percent in 2022 (though residential solar buys will receive no tax credit after 2021) -- a drastic decrease in the incentive to go solar from a financial angle. And because there will be less financial incentive to go solar, many environmentalists and solar advocates worry that it will keep the industry stagnant, or worse, send it backwards, which is why so many are pushing for an extension of the tax credit for at least 10 years.

Nicki Zvik, Founder of Green Solar Technologies, comments, “A 10-year extension of the Solar Investment Tax Credit set at 30 percent will allow the solar industry to progress technologically and economically to the point where we will no longer need a tax credit to incentivize people to use solar. Rather, solar will be so advantageous to the wallet and the environment that it would seem silly to use any other energy sources.”

And according to a recent article published by Reuters, “The U.S. solar energy industry will add an additional 113,000 jobs and generate $87 billion in investment over the next decade if U.S. lawmakers extend the sector’s key tax credit, a report published on Tuesday said...The SEIA forecast assumes the tax credit is allowed to remain at 30 percent until 2030. Under that scenario, the United States would install 36 percent more solar energy than it would if the credit was phased out as scheduled. That additional 82 gigawatts (GW) of capacity would be enough to power more than 15 million homes, the forecast said.”

“Based on the figures research is showing, as well as the environmental and economic goals of not only the U.S. but the world as a whole, it would only make sense to extend the tax credit,” states Nicki Zvik. “Bringing solar to the forefront of the energy conversation is essential to creating and maintaining a healthier, more prosperous future for us all.”

Nicki Zvik is the Founder of Green Solar Technologies and Spectrum Properties LLC.

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