Sian Crampsie

Lawmakers in the USA will consider plans to include energy storage technologies in the country’s investment tax credit (ITC) scheme after new legislation was introduced.

Mike Doyle (Democrat, Pennsylvania) has introduced the Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act into the US House of Representatives, proposing to make standalone energy storage projects eligible for the same 30 per cent ITC offered to solar photovoltaic (PV) schemes.

The proposals would grant full ITC eligibility to investments in residential, commercial and utility-scale energy storage schemes, with the same ramp-down now set for solar – 30 per cent through 2019, 26 per cent in 2020, and 22 per cent in 2021.

The incentive would then be phased down annually before leveling off to a standard, permanent 10 per cent tax credit after 2021 for commercial projects and would zero out for residential projects.

The proposals have been broadly welcomed by the renewable energy and energy storage industries. “We applaud and encourage support for the proposed legislation that includes energy storage as an eligible technology for the investment tax credit (ITC),” said Carl Mansfield, head of NantEnergy’s Commercial & Industrial energy storage business. “The bill is an important recognition of the critical role energy storage plays in modernizing the electric grid by enhancing grid reliability and resilience, and maximizing the integration of more renewables.

“As new battery chemistries and technologies are coming to market quickly and competing to meet the increasing demand for energy storage, these tax credits will support diversity in the storage market and I think will give customers – businesses and residents, alike – more choices to meet their unique storage needs.”

The American Wind Energy Association also praised the introduction of the new bill. “Like the power transmission lines that make up the grid, energy storage is a catalyst technology that makes the entire electricity supply more affordable and reliable,” said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA. “Expanding investment tax credit eligibility to all energy storage technologies would spark new clean energy infrastructure investment, grow American jobs, and help ensure our electricity supply is ready for future challenges.”