NREL Publishes Primer on Community Wind Projects

NREL Publishes Primer on Community Wind Projects

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory at Berkeley has published a new paper on the application of federal incentives on community wind projects.  (Revealing the Hidden Value that the Federal Investment Tax Credit and the Treasury Cash Grant Provide to Community Wind Projects).
 
The paper provides a helpful summary of the investment tax credit, the Treasury cash grant program and ways those incentives can be monetized and harnessed for locally-owned wind power projects.  Perhaps more importantly, though, the paper points out how the recession of 2008-09 may turn out to have been a blessing in disguise for community-owned wind projects.
 
Wind power grew dramatically during the middle 2000s, but most of these projects were investor-owned.  For-profit developers’ demands for turbines and qualified engineers often resulted in a shortage in those resources for more cash-strapped developers.  The downturn impacted many of these projects and resulted in an excess of supply over demand, allowing community-owned projects to begin to take up the slack.
 
The expansion of the investment tax credit and the availability of the Treasury cash grant have made it possible for community-based projects to get started with less upfront capital than in the past.
 
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