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Congress Must Pass Storage ITC Legislation to Strengthen Grid Reliability & Security

Tuesday, Apr 09 2019

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By
SEIA Comms Team
solar plus storage utility-scale

Over the last few years, experts and thought leaders in the energy field have echoed a popular refrain: solar + storage is the future. New legislation introduced last week in the U.S. Congress could mean that future is closer than we think.

Led by Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA), along with cosponsors Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), the Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act was reintroduced on Thursday. The bill would modify the tax code to include energy storage as an eligible technology for the investment tax credit (ITC).

This bill would accelerate the growth of energy storage technologies and encourage continued innovation to achieve numerous benefits for the electricity sector.

In early 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) determined that residential energy storage systems are eligible for the 30 percent solar ITC when they are charged entirely from an onsite solar array. Yet, without clear rules of the road for technology-neutral storage applications, companies continue to face financial uncertainty for their investments, resulting in a significant missed opportunity for more jobs and economic activity.

This bill would grant full ITC eligibility to residential, commercial and utility-scale storage systems, with the same ramp-down as the current solar ITC — 30 percent through the end of 2019, 26 percent in 2020 and 22 percent in 2021, while remaining at 10 percent permanently for commercial and utility-scale projects.

Poll after poll shows that Americans want more solar and other clean energy sources to command a larger role in our electricity grid. The growth of energy storage will encourage even more deployment of clean energy sources like solar, enhancing grid reliability and security, and delivering tangible benefits to grid operators.

As our nation becomes more energy independent, full ITC treatment for storage will help integrate renewable energy resources into the larger utility network and help us reach the Energy Storage Association’s goal of 35 gigawatts of new energy storage systems in the U.S. by 2025.

That is why we’re joining our partner organizations to urge Congress to enact the Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act, a common-sense bill that will encourage investment, jobs and accelerated deployment of solar + storage projects that make our grid stronger and more reliable.