Wind Tax Credits Vital to Energy Independence, Rove Says

Karl Rove Delivers a Speech
Karl Rove, former advisor to president George W. Bush, speaks to the crowd Dec. 7, 2011 at the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce luncheon at the American Bank Center. Photographer: Michael Zamora/Corpus Christi Caller-Times/AP Photo

Renewal of federal tax credits for wind energy can save U.S. jobs and reduce dependence on foreign oil, according to Karl Rove, an adviser to former President George W. Bush.

“We’ve got a growing economy that’s increasing energy consumption and wind energy should be part of the solution,” Rove said today on a panel at a wind conference in Atlanta. Extending the so-called production tax credit “should be a priority.”

A bill to extend through 2016 the 2.2-cent-a-kilowatt-hour credit for electricity produced by wind turbines, biomass, geothermal and landfill-gas plants has stalled in congress along with about 100 other expiring tax-related incentives.

The tax credit is one of the major topics of debate this week as executives gather for the Windpower 2012 annual conference.

There are about 75,000 U.S. wind-industry workers, according to the American Wind Energy Association. Letting the credit lapse will lead to the elimination of 10,000 wind-industry jobs this year and another 27,000 in 2013, the Washington-based trade group estimates.

(Corrects date in last paragraph.)
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