NewEnergyNews: QUICK NEWS, October 19: BIG BIZ WANTS CLIMATE ACTION; WIND’S FIGHT HEATS UP; HOW LOW WILL SOLAR GO?

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    Monday, October 19, 2015

    QUICK NEWS, October 19: BIG BIZ WANTS CLIMATE ACTION; WIND’S FIGHT HEATS UP; HOW LOW WILL SOLAR GO?

    BIG BIZ WANTS CLIMATE ACTION Global companies sign White House pledge on climate change action

    Demetri Sevastopulo and Barney Jopson, October 19, 2015 (Financial Times)

    “Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Nike and Ikea are among dozens of global companies that have signed a White House-sponsored pledge to take more aggressive action on climate change, as part of a broad push by President Barack Obama to corral corporate support for a global climate deal this year in Paris…68 companies have joined the 13 original signatories to the so-called American Business Act on Climate Change Pledge…[L]arge oil and gas companies such as ExxonMobil and Chevron were notably absent…Mr Obama hopes that support from companies with a combined market capitalisation of more than $5tn will boost the chances that the delegates from almost 200 countries can reach a climate accord in Paris. He also plans to use the pledges to craft a legacy on climate change during his final 15 months in office…” click here for more

    WIND’S FIGHT HEATS UP Wind industry betting on PTC extension

    Michael Copley, October 15, 2015 SNL

    “Wind companies are continuing to plan projects that rely on the federal production tax credit…even though the incentive expired at the end of 2014 and there is uncertainty whether Congress will reinstate it…[T]he industry seems to have worked through the pipeline of projects that were rushed into development in order to qualify for the production tax credit's safe harbor provision, and…[companies have new deals ready to go if Congress reinstates the subsidy…If developers are betting wrong, they will have to mothball projects…But if they do not take the gamble, [they fall behind their competition]….That calculation illustrates the pressure industry lobbyists are under to win over lawmakers who have started challenging tax policy that historically has had bipartisan support…The Senate Finance Committee in July voted to reinstate the PTC, which credits developers $23 per MWh that a wind farm generates, as part of a larger tax-extenders bill. However, House Republicans would rather select a few of the expired tax breaks and make them permanent. The production tax credit has not been one of them…” click here for more

    HOW LOW WILL SOLAR GO? Austin City council ups solar procurement to 450MW

    John Parnell, 16 October 2015 PV Tech

    “The council of Austin, Texas voted to up its solar procurement plans to 450MW…[by the end of 2019 and its utility, Austin Energy,] is eyeing post-investment tax credit (ITC) savings by owning its solar assets itself…Documents from the meeting put the annual cost of procuring up to 650MW at US$44 million valuing the 25-year power purchase agreements at US$1.1 billion. Up to 450MW has been costed at US$17 million a year and US$425 million in total...Concerns over the impact on energy bills resulted in a 1% increase cap on consumer bills…A presentation by Austin Energy also dismissed the impact of the ITC's step-down from 30 to 10% at the end of 2016…The company said it had been offered power from post-ITC cut projects for less than 2% more than the cost of pre-2016 projects…[which plant ownership would offset] with lower build costs.” click here for more

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