U.S. Representative Charlie Crist (D-St. Petersburg) announced introduction of the Sunshine Forever Act, legislation that would add another ten years of life to the Solar Investment Tax Credit. The bill would allow for an additional decade of increased solar power generation and innovation across the country.
"Sunshine is Florida's greatest renewable resource, and the solar tax credit makes it cheaper and easier to turn our God-given sunlight into clean, endless energy," said Crist. "If Congress fails to act, the Solar Credit will begin to sunset next year, fading away completely for homeowners by 2023. Now is the time to keep our foot on the solar accelerator. The Sunshine Forever Act will fight Florida's greatest threat of climate change with our best resource -- the sun!"
The legislation was announced at the St. Pete Earth Day celebration held Saturday, April 13 at Williams Park in St. Petersburg. Crist spoke on the positive actions he and his colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives have taken to safeguard our environment and fight back against climate change, as well as renewable energy initiatives taken by Pinellas County and the City of St. Petersburg.
Sunshine Forever Act Background:
The Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) was established in 2006 to lower homeowners' and businesses' costs to install electricity-generating solar panels. Acting as a 30% off coupon paid for by the federal government, the tax credit has experienced great success -- with a 1,600% growth in solar installations and 374,000 jobs created as of 2017. Currently, solar capacity generates 64 Gigawatts of electricity, which is enough to power 12.3 million homes every year. This offsets 3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere every year, equal to planting 1.2 billion trees.
The Sunshine Forever Act, would extend the Solar Invest Tax Credit for ten more years, keeping the tax credit at 30% through 2029.