One reason that existing solar and wind incentives will continue, according to The New York Times, is the rising influence of the renewables industry, even among Republicans. Charles Grassley of Iowa and Dean Heller of Nevada, for example, both objected to the rollback of incentives in the House bill. Grassley may not be convinced that global warming is a problem, but Iowa gets more than one-third of its electricity from wind turbines. Heller’s home state is where Tesla is building a giant factory to make batteries for its electric vehicles.Wind and solar together accounted for about 6.5% of all U.S. electricity in 2016, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.“As wind and solar projects have soared in the U.S., in both red and blue states, so has the industry’s influence in Washington, D.C., on both sides of the aisle,” Dan W. Reicher, director of the Center for Energy Policy and Finance at Stanford, told The Times. Expired tax credits lower salesUntil the end of 2016, consumers could take advantage of federal tax credits for energy-related improvements made to their primary homes, including heating and cooling equipment, water heaters, windows, and insulation. Those benefits have expired.Ground-source heat pumps (also called geothermal systems) had been eligible for the 30% credit, and the industry experienced a sharp decline in sales after it expired. Manufacturers were encouraged by an early version of the tax bill in the House of Representatives, which restored the credit and made it retroactive to the beginning of 2017. But in the end, the provision was not included.“It was a kick in the pants,” said Ryan Dougherty, the chief operating officer of Geo Exchange, the trade group representing the ground-source heat pump industry in the U.S.Along with other “orphan technologies” like fuel cells and small wind, the industry has been left behind, despite what Dougherty said was support from a “broad coalition” of Democrats and Republicans in Congress.The 30% tax credit was especially useful for heat pump manufacturers because it made the relatively expensive systems competitive with other HVAC options, Dougherty said by phone. When the credits were no longer available, sales fell by as much as 50%. Allowing tax credits to expire amounted to the government telling consumers the “technology is not worth your money,” he said. “It’s leaving the little guys behind. Our industry is the little guys.”Mike Bergey, president and CEO of Bergey Wind Power, a manufacturer of small wind turbines, expressed similar views. The loss of tax incentives was “pretty devastating,” he said in a call, and “completely killed” the company’s residential market. Loss of sales persuaded many of Bergey’s mom-and-pop distributors to begin selling PV modules instead of wind turbines, and rebuilding the retail network won’t be easy.Bergey found the disparity between continued tax credits for PV modules that are largely made overseas and the lack of any credit for residential wind turbine buyers in the U.S. disturbing. “It’s just not a good narrative,” he said.A sliver of good news for the small wind industry, however, is a continuing tax credit for small commercial customers, such as ranches and farms. That credit is 24% this year and will drop by 6 points per year until it’s gone. That appears to be untouched in the new tax bill. Some concerns remainOne sour note for environmentalists is the provision that will open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil drilling. Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and other Republicans have been pressing for the change for years and argue it can be done without harming the 19.6 million-acre refuge, what has been described as one of the most pristine regions in the U.S. Democrats have fought the move.Another sticking point for renewable energy advocates was the Base Erosion Anti-Abuse Tax (BEAT), a provision designed to prevent big corporations from moving their profits overseas to avoid federal taxes.The American Council on Renewable Energy had warned in November that BEAT would have “a devastating if unintended impact” on the solar and wind industries by undermining the use of renewable energy tax credits to pay for new projects.The final version of the bill, Greentech Media said, lets corporations continue using the Investment Tax Credit and the Production Tax Credit to lower taxable income, although at a lower rates.BEAT is not something, however, that residential renewable energy customers are going to spend much time worrying about. (For a detailed explainer on how BEAT works, read this.) The tax overhaul passed this week by Congress leaves tax breaks for solar and utility-scale wind projects in place, but does not restore tax credits for ground-source heat pumps and small wind turbines as those two “orphan technologies” had hoped. The Associated Press reports that the $1.5 trillion package does nothing to change tax credits for the wind and solar industries. Under terms of a bill passed in 2015, the incentives for utility-scale wind run through 2020 and solar benefits until 2022.The bill also includes a tax credit of up to $7,500 for plug-in vehicles, despite earlier attempts in the House to kill it. (If you’re interested in wading through the 560 pages of the bill, you can find it here.)Of key importance to homeowners is survival of the 30% federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) for photovoltaic (PV) systems and solar hot water systems. The ITC will drop to 26% in 2020 and 22% in 2021. After that, the residential credit drops to zero while the commercial and utility credit goes to 10% permanently, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.While the solar industry benefits, the bill does nothing to restore tax credits that would have helped manufacturers of small wind turbines and ground-source heat pumps — a bitter pill for both of those industries. Still a ‘glimmer of hope’Dougherty sees a “glimmer of hope” in a House bill sponsored by Tom Reed, a New York Republican, that would restore tax credits for geothermal and small wind systems. But, Dougherty said, Congress is unlikely to consider stand-alone bills — that is, bills with a single purpose rather than proposals that become part of omnibus legislation — and the chance of passage at the moment looks “slim to none.”“It’s not that heavy a lift,” he said of the bill’s $2.3 billion price tag over five years. “It won’t break the bank.”But the situation appears fluid. Dougherty and Bergey were hoping to get language to restore the credits into an “extender bill” for the federal budget that could be considered in January. Bergey said he understands there’s interest in that approach, and its chance of approval could be as high as 60%.“These are tough times,” he said. “We’ve seen tough times before. We’ll come out of this OK.” RELATED ARTICLES Tax Bill Would Deal a Blow to RenewablesDeciphering the Tax Credits
Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa Orlando started attacking the basket, hitting three straight layups, and that opened up the perimeter. Gordon nailed his third 3 to give the Magic a 101-100 lead with three minutes to play.TIP-INSPistons: Galloway left in the second quarter to get three stitches to close a cut over his right eye. He returned in the second half. … Detroit turned the ball over on its first four possessions. The Pistons didn’t get off a shot for nearly three minutes. … Griffin is 0 for 11 on 3-pointers in his last four games. … Detroit has forced more than 10 turnovers in 48 straight games, the longest current streak in the NBA. The Pistons forced 16 turnovers in this one.Magic: Jonathan Isaac, the team’s first pick in the 2017 draft, played for the first time in 26 games. He had three points and two rebounds in 15 minutes. … SG Aaron Afflalo was deactivated before the game so the Magic could see more of 10-day signee Rashad Vaughn, but Vaughn did not play.UP NEXTPistons: Play at Miami on Saturday night.Magic: Host the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday night to complete a three-game homestand. Cavaliers may find Love sooner than expected Read Next Typhoon ‘Tisoy’ threatens Games John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Orlando Magic’s Aaron Gordon (00) shoots over Detroit Pistons’ Blake Griffin (23) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 2, 2018, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)ORLANDO, Fla. — Aaron Gordon had 27 points and 13 rebounds to help the Orlando Magic stop a seven-game losing streak with a 115-106 victory against the Detroit Pistons in overtime Friday night.Nikola Vucevic added 22 points and 12 rebounds, and D.J. Augustin had 20 points and nine assists for the Magic. Evan Fournier scored 17, including seven in the extra period.ADVERTISEMENT Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC MOST READ LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving LATEST STORIES James Ennis and Reggie Bullock led Detroit with 21 points apiece. Blake Griffin, Dwight Buycks and Anthony Tolliver had 12 each for the slumping Pistons, who have lost seven of nine.Fournier scored the first six points in overtime, giving Orlando a 110-104 lead going into the final two minutes.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutDetroit, which had only one field goal in the final 5:57 of regulation, missed all eight shots from the field and its first three free throws in overtime. Tolliver’s two free throws with 32 seconds left were the only points the Pistons scored in the extra period.The Magic could have won it in regulation. Fournier drilled a 3-pointer that gave Orlando a 104-102 lead with 47 seconds left in the fourth quarter. The Pistons tied it when Griffin got a long rebound and found Ennis for a breakaway dunk that tied the game at 104 with seven seconds left.The Magic muffed their chance for a game-winner. Vucevic lost his balance when driving the lane and turned the ball over, leading to overtime.The teams played evenly for three periods, going into the fourth quarter tied at 82.Detroit got consecutive 3-pointers from Buycks, Tolliver and Langston Galloway to take a 97-91 lead with 6:47 left in the fourth.Like most leads in the game, however, it was short-lived.ADVERTISEMENT
Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Jayson Castro, RR Pogoy and Troy Rosario will team up for TNT against fellow Gilas Pilipinas mainstay and Phoenix star Matthew Wright, who had 32 points against GlobalPort. The Fuel Masters stunned the Texters, 74-72, in their lone meeting of the tournament, with Doug Kramer hitting the game-winning shot with eight seconds remaining on Feb. 8. Both teams finished with identical 5-6 records.The winner gets to advance to the playoff but books a clash against powerhouse defending champion San Miguel Beer, which owns a twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinals.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe Texters kept their bid alive for a playoff berth with a 101-75 conquest of NLEX Road Warriors on Wednesday with new acquisition Jericho Cruz sparkling with 17 points.“We’ve been struggling offensively and that’s no secret,” said TNT coach Nash Racela. “Our team has no depth and the addition of Jericho gives us that extra guy who could give major minutes.” Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Petron clubs Finals tormentor Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. PBA IMAGESTNT KaTropa puts its string of quarterfinal appearances on the line against an equally determined Phoenix Petroleum squad on Sunday in the PBA Philippine Cup at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The Texters haven’t missed the quarterfinals of the All-Filipino tournament since the 2007-2008 season, but the streak is under threat against the Fuel Masters, who are coming off a morale-boosting 104-100 victory over GlobalPort last Friday.ADVERTISEMENT John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding MOST READ LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus Read Next LATEST STORIES Typhoon ‘Tisoy’ threatens Games Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving
Our astrological forecast raises a toast to staying fit this summer. Here are some sunny tips for you.AriesMarch 21 – April 20Aries is a fire sign, which imparts enthusiasm and dynamic energy. You would do well at rigorous sporting activities like kick boxing and weight lifting. Team sports like football or cricket.is also a good idea for you.TaurusApr 21 – May 20Playing tennis, badminton or squash would be a good idea to keep your body and mind fit. A practical person like you would otherwise consider exercising a waste of time, if it will not mentally stimulate you.GeminiMay 21 – June 21A gemini loves entertainment and partying with a group of friends. Workouts which can give them an opportunity to meet new people would be ideal for you. Activities like bollywood dancing and gymnastics would fit the bill.CancerJune 22 – July 23Cancerians are always more comfortable at home. A relaxed environment while exercising would keep you fit as well as happy. You can set up a mini gym in your basement or a spare room. Running on a treadmill is a good option for you.LeoJuly 24 – Aug 23Leos cannot do with boredom, and tend to get lazy at times. So, exercising in the gym under the supervision of a trainer would be beneficial for you. You can also try swimming or some bollywood dancing . A dynamic workout would keep you upbeat all day long.VirgoAug 24 – Sept 23A virgo is a perfectionist and likes to push themselves harder to attain the unattainable. Rigorous running in a cross country marathon or skiing is perfect for you.aadvertisementLibraSept 24 – Oct 22Refined taste and a strong aesthetic sense comes naturally to you. A love for luxury and all things beautiful encourages activities like Golfing in a plush golf club or exercising in a well equipped gym. Workout is more appealing when they can socialise at the same time.ScorpioOct 23 – Nov 22Scorpio represents one of the strongest signs of the zodiac. This deep well of strength needs to be channelised in right direction. Kick Boxing, karate and power yoga are good options for this powerful and intense sun sign.SagittariusNov 23 – Dec 22You people love adventure and outdoor sports. Activities such as sky diving, bunjee jumping, mountaineering and rock climbing would give you some much needed adrenaline rush. But extreme sports involves risk. Take safety precautions to avoid danger.CapricornDec 23- Jan 20A Capriconian is driven by ambition. Their structured minds would do well at golf where they would be able to exercise while expanding their networking circle.AquariusJanuary 21-February 19Physical exertion is not your cup of tea. A dedicated soul like you would be more interested in alternative therapies. For instance, enrolling yourself in a Tai Chi, Chi Yung or Sudarshan Kriya class would be your key to fitness and relaxation.PiscesFeb 20 – Mar 20They are gentle, sensitive and like to live in their imaginative world. Make an effort to keep yourself calm. Healing activities like Surya Namaskar and light workouts such as cycling would release the tension and would give you a fresh perspective on things.