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February 9, 2018

Congress Extends Tax Breaks for Clean Energy — and Carbon Capture

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Inside Climate News – The compromise federal spending bill that Congress passed early Friday includes an array of tax credits for renewable energy, along with a controversial tax break for carbon-capturing technologies that will benefit the fossil fuel industries.

Known as  "tax extenders" because they expand or revive temporary benefits that had lapsed, these provisions will provide significant incentives for people and companies to invest in low-carbon forms of energy, ranging from residential installations of solar water heaters and geothermal heat pumps to nuclear power plants.

In some cases, industry groups had lobbied for the provisions for years with little gain while Congress extended solar and wind tax credits during the Obama administration and enacted the Trump administration's recent broad tax break for corporate profits and personal incomes.

This time, the tax extenders made it into a package of spending provisions that will keep the government open for several weeks, while also guaranteeing large increases in military and domestic spending programs for two years, and raising the ceiling on the national debt. The package, which had bipartisan support in the Senate and was endorsed by the White House, overcame opposition from liberal and conservative flanks in the House and settles, at least for now, the main fiscal debates facing Congress.

Read more at Inside Climate News.

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