By Lynn Jurich & Kathy Hannun | Morning Consult
(Editor’s note: Opinion pieces are published for discussion purposes only.)
We were heartened to see several prominent U.S. senators join the bipartisan Senate Climate Caucus recently to focus on developing new climate legislation. We could not agree more with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) that “we as Americans have the ability to come up with climate solutions that can benefit our economy and our way of life.”
This group should start its work by supporting a climate policy that historically has had strong bipartisan support: clean energy tax incentives, including the solar Investment Tax Credit. The ITC has been the single-most effective federal policy for clean energy deployment since President George W. Bush and a Republican Congress established it in 2006. Since then, the ITC has helped grow clean energy generation by 20,904.3 percent.
The ITC incentivizes the installation of clean energy technology such as solar power and geothermal heat pumps. Homeowners and businesses can claim a tax credit equal to 30 percent of their investment through the end of 2019, but the credit begins to step down in 2020.
Congress should pass legislation this year to delay this step-down. Failure to do so will put our clean energy progress at risk.