Washington D.C. – March 20, 2020 – The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) today issued the following statement on the COVID-19 phase three stimulus bill.
“Congress took unprecedented steps today to protect Americans’ health and safety and strengthen the economy as we navigate the COVID-19 crisis. We applaud its efforts and appreciate its consideration of clean energy in this early stimulus. The wind energy industry’s top priority remains focused only on addressing the disruptions caused by COVID-19 by ensuring the safety of the wind workforce, protecting American jobs, and preserving economic investment in local communities. Together we will ensure our country and industry emerge stronger from this global emergency.
While we’re disappointed clean energy sector relief did not make it into the phase three stimulus package, we will continue working with Congress and other renewable energy leaders to find solutions to the specific challenges COVID-19 is causing our members. Relief provisions ensuring renewable projects can secure financing and meet safe harbor continuity schedules are critical to preserving a strong domestic clean energy sector. Making these adjustments to existing tax credits would provide the industry the flexibility needed to accommodate COVID-19 delays, without costing the Federal government any additional money. Taking these steps will protect thousands of American jobs and billions in economic investment, particularly in rural America, while preserving our country’s progress towards a strong economy and clean future. Without assistance, 35,000 American jobs, $43 billion of investment, and $8 billion in payments to local communities are at risk.
On behalf of the 114,000-strong wind energy workforce operating in all 50 states, we thank Congress for its continued renewable energy support. Affordable, reliable energy is not a luxury– it’s a necessity. It provides the foundation and powers the infrastructure of our great country, ensuring its operations and functionality can continue without interruption on the road to recovery, and the wind energy workforce is working hard to keep the lights on during this trying time.” – Tom Kiernan, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association