Action seen as a boost for American workers and customers
The Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) applauds the passage of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 today, which included a reinstatement of the federal fuel cell investment tax credit (ITC).
"On behalf of America's 10,000 fuel cell and hydrogen industry workers, scientists, and innovators, we thank Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Charles Schumer (D-NY) for moving forward with this bipartisan deal and righting this wrong. We also thank the Senators Dean Heller (R-NV) and Tom Carper (D-DE) and Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY) and Patrick Meehan (R-PA), who sponsored legislation to address the ITC issue," said Morry Markowitz, President of the FCHEA. "We also want to recognize the members of the Senate and House Fuel Cell Caucuses whose support helped secure passage of the ITC."
The 30 percent ITC, which will phase-out over the five years, places stationary and material handling fuel cells on an even footing with other clean energy technologies. The reinstatement was needed after a 2015 legislative package extended the ITC exclusively for solar technology. The lack of parity was seen as disruptive to the growth of this industry in terms of output and new job creation. FCHEA, its members, and supporters have worked with its allies in Congress to educate members and staff about the benefits of fuel cells and the need to restore ITC fairness.
The budget deal passed this morning also includes a one-year retroactive reinstatement for Sections 30B and 30C provisions for fuel cell vehicles and hydrogen infrastructure. This leaves fuel cell vehicles at a disadvantage compared to battery electric vehicles which have an established federal tax incentive.
"While we are grateful for restoration of parity in the tax code for stationary and material handling fuel cell equipment, we are still hopeful that Congress will take additional action on providing parity for all electric vehicle platforms by fully reinstating incentives for fuel cell electric vehicles and hydrogen infrastructure," said Markowitz.
Fuel cells generate electricity through a chemical process utilizing oxygen and hydrogen without combustion. Extremely efficient, quiet, and reliable, fuel cells emit virtually no emissions and serve as primary and backup power systems for customers nationwide. Because they rely on domestic energy resources, including natural gas, biogas, solar, and wind power, fuel cells enhance America's energy security and keep U.S. energy dollars at home.
About the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association
The Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) represents the leading companies and organizations that are advancing innovative, clean, safe, and reliable energy technologies. FCHEA drives support and provides a consistent industry voice to regulators and policymakers. Our educational efforts promote the environmental and economic benefits of fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies.
For more information, visit us online at www.fchea.org.