New strategy targets tax breaks for green energy - If you can't beat Big Oil, join 'em. That's part of a pragmatic new green energy strategy that seeks tax breaks for renewable power that were once limited to fossil fuels and biofuels.
Excuse me folks but the people wind and solar compete with are not oil & gas companies but fossil fueled generation firms. They do not get accelerated depreciation (which wind and solar already get) nor do they get production tax credits or cash-grants-in-lieu. Come to think of it oil & gas firms get deductions of expenses on their income tax rather than tax credits. While I admit my search was not exhaustive, the only tax credits O&G got were for producing from marginal wells but that credit applies only when oil is below $30/bbl--oh, and I guess they get tax credits when they participate in ethanol-from-crops programs and build wind and solar projects.
The nice thing about a tax credit is that once you have made your investment in the wind or solar installation, you do not have to spend (relatively speaking) much money to get the credit. A $1 tax credit is worth about $2.86 in pretax earnings which the firm needs to spend probably $28 to $34 to get. Let's just ignore the fact that the expenditure made means jobs for the firm's people, jobs for their suppliers' people, sales taxes on many of the transactions, purchases of land and equipment, construction wages to build facilities--things that generate revenue for the government while simultaneously growing the economy. No, it is obviously better for the federal government to take tax money from a shrinking pool of income tax payers to give to these firms to make green energy backed up by older , less efficient, more polluting generating plants that should have been replaced by newer, more efficient, cleaner ones but weren't because subsidized green energy which is not dispatchable and not reliable interfered with natural market forces because the potential developers of these new plants had to compete in a rigged electricity market.
The US has lost its way entirely. Capitalism and market forces have been supplanted by subsidies be they PTCs and grants on the business side or welfare and food stamps on the personal side--rewards for doing nothing.