Recent Press Releases

Washington, D.C. —  Senator John Thune joined 87 of his Senate colleagues this morning in voting for an amendment to the Housing Act, which would extend the renewable energy production tax credit for one year. Senator Thune was a cosponsor of the amendment.

"This is a step in the right direction for wind energy production. Wind energy generated in South Dakota has the potential to be a part of our nation's long-term energy strategy," said Thune. "South Dakota's wind producers need this tax credit now to plan for future investments in critical infrastructure.

"Wind energy production is a developing industry, and tax incentives are necessary to spur growth and create jobs. The production tax credit will allow South Dakota wind energy producers to translate one of our state's most abundant resources into jobs and increased energy security. I will continue to look for ways to expand our wind energy production in this country and hopefully find a way to extend this tax credit for more than one year at a time."

Currently, the existing production tax credit incentive of 2 cents per kilowatt hour is scheduled to expire at the end of 2008. Senator Thune and other wind energy leaders in the Senate are working to extend the production tax credit, so that wind energy developers have certainty when it comes to future projects both in South Dakota and across the country.

"Congress has been unable to extend the PTC for almost a year. With 88 votes in the United States Senate, this legislation to extend the PTC has more bipartisan support than any proposal debated thus far in either the Senate or the House of Representatives," said Thune.

Michael C. Robinson, Deputy Director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado, has said South Dakota is capable of producing 566 GW of electrical power from wind, which is the equivalent of 52% of the nation's electricity demand. NREL's estimates indicate that the wind energy potential in South Dakota is twice as large as states such as Montana, Minnesota, and Wyoming.