ACEE Reports on Extension and Modification of Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives
- for appliances, a one-year extension;
- for new homes, coverage for 2010 and 2011;
- and for home retrofits, one year with modifications.
Under the pending bill, the appliance credit is extended for one year, and efficiency criteria and incentives have been updated to provide incentives only for products that are significantly more efficient than today's average new product. For example, for refrigerators, the incentive applies to products that exceed federal minimum efficiency standards by 30% and 35%. These are products that exceed ENERGY STAR® requirements (which are now 20% above federal minimums). The incentives go to manufacturers, but should reduce the price consumers see in stores for these highly-efficient products.
(The appliance credit began in 2005, increasing the availability and market share of what were then very efficient products. As availability and market share increased, ENERGY STAR and federal minimum levels have also increased with the result that all of the 2005 tax credit levels either are now federal minimums or are expected to soon become federal minimums based on an agreement struck in the summer of 2010 between appliance manufacturers and energy efficiency organizations, including ACEEE.)
ACEEE says Congress is likely to consider further extensions of these incentives into 2012 and beyond next year. Key Congressional offices have already indicated that the existing homes incentives are likely to receive a major overhaul at that time. Information on the current federal tax incentives and the new tax incentives is posted at www.energytaxincentives.org.
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