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Finance & Tax

The availability of low-cost financing for solar energy projects is a critical issue for the industry. SEIA monitors regulations and legislation that affect the markets for solar financing, and supports a number of specific programs that facilitate solar development. The U.S. also has a long history of supporting energy infrastructure through the U.S. tax code, and the market certainty provided by the long-term solar investment tax credit (ITC) has supported hundreds of thousands of U.S. jobs.

Solar Investment Tax Credit

The solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is one of the most important federal policy mechanisms to support the growth of solar energy in the United States. Since the ITC was enacted in 2006, the U.S. solar industry has grown by more than 10,000%. In 2015, SEIA successfully advocated for a multi-year extension of the credit, which has provided critical stability for businesses and investors.

Quick Facts about the ITC
  • The ITC is a 26 percent tax credit for solar systems on residential (under Section 25D) and commercial (under Section 48) properties.
  • The residential and commercial solar ITC has helped the U.S. solar industry grow by more than 10,000% percent since it was implemented in 2006, with an average annual growth of 50% over the last decade alone.
  • Congress passed a multi-year extension of the ITC in 2015, but the credit began stepping down at the end of 2019.

Finance Programs

SEIA has a variety of initiatives on financing designed to facilitate industry coordination and promote outreach to current and potential stakeholders. Our goal is to improve comprehension, ease financing complexity, and spur capital formation and project development.

About SEIA's Finance Work

SEIA convenes several committees and working groups to conduct research, develop educational materials, and organize the various facets of the solar energy finance industry.  SEIA also organizes conferences, webinars and other forums for stakeholder engagement and industry participation. In January 2017, SEIA merged with Solar Energy Finance Association (SEFA) to provide the solar industry a single and consistent voice to the investment community. 

Tax Issues

The U.S. has a long history of supporting energy infrastructure through the U.S. tax code. The market certainty provided by a long-term investment tax credit (ITC) for solar energy has supported private investment in manufacturing and project construction, a vital part in meeting our nation's energy policy goals, driving cost-cutting innovation and job growth.

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