Wind power: Former Congressman Boucher sees PTC extension likely

Rick Boucher, a former U.S. Congressman from coal country in southwestern Virginia, told the Bloomberg New Energy Finance Summit last week that he believes Congress will extend the federal wind energy Production Tax Credit (PTC) beyond its scheduled expiration at the end of this year.

Boucher said the PTC "has the strongest level of bipartisan support of anything," according to the publication Environmental Finance. He also said the credit is popular and can be packaged with other less attractive tax provisions to increase the chances that the entire package will be approved.

A House bill seeking to extend the PTC has 85 cosponsors, including 18 Republicans, and has received the endorsement of a broad coalition of more than 370 members, including the National Association of Manufacturers, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the Edison Electric Institute, and the Western Governors’ Association, while a Senate bill to extend it was introduced March 15 by seven Senators, including three Republicans. A PTC extension also has the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the bipartisan Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition, which includes 23 Republican and Democratic Governors from across the U.S.

Tom Gray,