Today, Senator Jon Ossoff (D-Georgia) introduced a bill, officially The Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act, which would establish a tax credit for domestic solar manufacturers. Accordingly, this bill marks an effort to boost the U.S. solar supply chain. Besides, the act looks to create more American clean energy jobs, lead the industry to compete with offshore manufacturers, and support energy independence efforts in the country.
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Worth noting, this incentive would be available through 2028, with a phase-down taking place the two years following. Moreover, if passed, the bill would add to President Biden’s American Jobs Plan.
About The Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act
Indeed, this initiative already has significant renewable energy provisions, including a 10-year extension of tax credits for solar and wind. Besides, it includes establishing other clean energy tax credits and includes direct pay of said credits.
In this regard, incentives would vary depending on the solar dispositive. Thus, modules would receive a credit of 11 cents, multiplied by the capacity of the modules. On the other hand, cells would receive 4 cents, multiplied by the capacity of the cell. Similarly, wafers would be credited at $12 per square meter. Lastly, solar-grade polysilicon would receive a credit of $3 per kilogram.
Accordingly, Ossoff said in an interview Monday with Bloomberg News; “We should not be satisfied that China has a stranglehold on the solar supply chain and they have been heavily subsidizing domestic production for about a decade and a half without any substantial response from the United States.”
Additionally, the legislation has been met with open arms by the solar industry. For instance, Abigail Ross Hopper, president, and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said in a statement of support; “While the broader U.S. solar industry continues to flourish, America’s solar manufacturing sector has languished.” Moreover, now is the time to “seize the promise” of American solar manufacturing, she added.
Reception and support
The statement also included a call to increase the country’s annual domestic production capacity tenfold by 2030.
Similarly, Samantha Sloan, vice president of global policy at U.S. manufacturer First Solar Inc., said in an emailed statement; “After a decade of witnessing the systematic erosion of America’s leadership in solar innovation and manufacturing; and the corresponding over-reliance on imports from China, the Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act represents a new hope for American solar.”
Indeed, senators Raphael Warnock (D-Georgia), Michael Bennet (D-Colorado), and Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) co-sponsored the legislation. Moreover, Mr. Ossoff is working with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) to include the proposal into a broader clean energy plan; particularly, the senator is looking to attach this plan into an infrastructure bill later this year.
In addition to the Senate support, a group of companies which includes Q-CELLS America, Hemlock Semiconductors, L.G. Electronics USA, and REC Silicon ASA, among others, supported the bill.