GEA: geothermal energy needs tax credit extension

October 19, 2011 -- The Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) recently asked the House Select Revenue Measures and Oversight subcommittees to extend the renewable energy production tax credit to geothermal energy, saying that it has been a principal factor in the growth of the industry.

Many geothermal projects will not be completed by the current tax credit expiration deadline, which will undermine future industry growth according to the GEA. Since 2005, the US geothermal market has grown from 2,737 MW of installed baseload capacity in 2005 to 3102 MW in 2010.

In the existing tax code, geothermal incentives expire at the end of 2013, but for solar energy the 30 percent Investment Tax Credit (ITC) runs through 2016. In this Congress, legislation has been introduced to address the disparity by extending the 30 percent ITC for geothermal to 2016 as well. H.R. 2408 was sponsored by Reps. Dave Reichert (R-WA) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), while in the Senate, Ron Wyden (D-OR), Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Dean Heller (R-NV) introduced identical legislation (S. 1413).

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