production tax credit

For Decades, the Oil and Gas Industry Got Taxpayer Help from the Fracking Production Tax Credit

Read time: 6 mins
Stacked drilling rigs in the Permian Basin in spring 2020

Before the U.S. fracking boom took off, shale drillers had access for over two decades to a particular tax incentive that experts say played a key role in setting the stage for the so-called shale revolution.

Known as the Section 29 Unconventional Fuels Production Tax Credit, this subsidy resulted in more than tripling the production of unconventional gas, at a cost of at least $10 billion to taxpayers, from 1980 to 2002.

If We Keep Subsidizing Wind, Will the Cost of Wind Energy Go Down?

Read time: 5 mins
Wind farm along I40 in Oklahoma

By Eric Williams and Eric Hittinger, Rochester Institute of Technology

There are high hopes for renewable energy to help society by providing a more stable climate, better energy security and less pollution. Government actions reflect these hopes through policies to promote renewable energy. In the U.S. since 1992 there’s been a federal subsidy to promote wind energy, and many states require electricity utilities to use some renewable energy.

But when is the right time to stop government support for an energy technology?

The US Installed More Than Twice As Much Solar and Wind As Fossil Fuel Electricity So Far In 2015

Read time: 3 mins

Throughout the entire first half of 2015, solar and wind energy accounted for 2,518 megawatts of new electricity generating capacity brought online in the US — some 65 percent of all new capacity added so far this year.

Coal accounted for a mere 3 MW during that time period, while natural gas accounted for 1,173 MW (there was no new oil). That’s less than half the amount of solar and wind energy added January to June. Wind alone, at 1,969 MW, was more than all fossil fuels combined.

Uncertainty Over Tax Credits Causing Turmoil In Renewable Energy Sector

Read time: 4 mins

Uncertainty over the future of the wind production tax credit and the solar investment tax credit—and Congressional inaction on both matters—could pose a serious challenge to development in the renewable energy sector.

Wind energy had a huge year in 2012, with 13,128 megawatts (MW) of new wind capacity installed, but has failed to get anywhere close to matching that number since. The fact that the wind production tax credit (PTC) expired last year might have something to do with that.

Wind energy developers only need to have made minor investments by the 2013 deadline to qualify for the tax credit, so there are still a number of new installations in the works, and 2014 has so far seen a fair amount of growth in wind energy capacity. But that will not be the case for long if Congress doesn't act.

According to the American Wind Energy Association's latest quarterly market report, some 711 turbines capable of producing 1,254 megawatts of wind energy were installed in the US during the first three quarters of 2014, which is more than in all of 2013.

But while there are more than 13,600 more MW of wind capacity currently under construction, that number is expected to drop off sharply as projects are brought online and fewer new projects are started due to the expiration of the wind production tax credit (PTC).

Subscribe to production tax credit