President Called for Extension in State of the Union Address and In Iowa Visit Today

WASHINGTON D.C. – The Security in Energy and Manufacturing (SEAM) Act, authored by U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), would extend the advanced energy manufacturing tax credit – a proposal which President Obama endorsed in his 2012 State of the Union Address and in a visit to Iowa today. This job-creating clean energy tax cut, which has delivered nearly $125 million to seven Ohio manufacturers to help create clean energy jobs, provides investment tax credits of 30 percent for facilities that manufacture energy equipment. Currently, 70 percent of clean energy components are manufactured outside of the United States.

“We can’t trade a dependence on foreign oil for a dependence on foreign-made sources of energy,” Brown said. “It’s unacceptable that 70 percent of clean energy components are made outside of the U.S. Extending the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit will help more American manufacturers create jobs through the production of cutting-edge energy technologies.”

To be eligible for the tax credit, manufacturers must produce solar, wind, and geothermal energy equipment; fuel cells, microturbines, and batteries; electric cars; electric grids; energy conservation technologies; and equipment that captures and sequesters carbon dioxide or reduces greenhouse gas emissions. The SEAM Act is also cosponsored by Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), and Bob Casey (D-PA).

The initial tax credit, which was included in the Recovery Act, supported seven Ohio projects totaling nearly $125 million in tax credits; dozens more eligible projects applied for funding and were denied due to a lack of funds. The Department of Energy (DOE) states that the program was more than three times oversubscribed. Nationwide, DOE deemed 418 projects eligible, which amounts to $5.8 billion in unfunded eligible applications. These manufacturers are waiting in the pipeline, and would be ready to break ground soon after they receive funding.

Brown is the leading congressional champion of the 48C tax credit. The 48C program provides a 30 percent credit for domestic companies that invest in new, expanded, or reequipped clean energy manufacturing projects. The program is aimed at building capacity to meet this new and growing source of demand.

Brown has repeatedly called for the expansion of the 48C program. In April 2010, Brown led a letter with 10 U.S. Senators calling for climate legislation to provide assistance for manufacturers by expanding the 48C program. The same month, Brown joined Ron Bloom, Senior Counselor for Manufacturing Policy, to hold a roundtable with central Ohio manufacturers at Edison Welding Institute in Columbus. Sen. Brown also met with southeastern Ohio manufacturers at Thermo Fisher plant in Marietta.