Industry group the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) released estimates this week that the U.S. could see massive job cuts if Congress fails to pass an extension of the expiring Production Tax Credit for wind power.
The AWEA suggests that as many as half of the country's 75,000 employees in the wind energy sector could lose their jobs without further support from Congress, along with more than $15 billion of investment.
"It is vital that the U.S. continue its support for wind energy, which supports manufacturing jobs, drives innovation, protects our environment and improves our energy security," said Congressman Earl Blumenauer from Oregon. "Extending the production tax credit is an important step that Congress can take now to preserve these benefits for the future."
Blumenauer is a Democrat, but Politico notes that this particular renewable energy subsidy actually boasts broad bipartisan support, given the wide impact of the wind energy sector. Nevertheless, opposition among congressional budget hawks has stalled action on the tax credit, pushing many companies to begin trimming planned projects.