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New Poll: Nearly All Americans Want Congress to Extend Clean Energy Tax Incentives

Extending Clean Energy Tax Credits Would Fulfill 25% of U.S. Paris Climate Agreement

Tuesday, Dec 03 2019

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Press Release

A new survey released today shows that Americans overwhelmingly support extending tax incentives for clean energy and would change their vote based on the issue.

Leading public opinion research firm Global Strategy Group (GSG) surveyed voters across the country, including in key battleground states and districts, and found that 89% of voters support extending clean energy tax incentives for solar, wind and energy storage. Voters overwhelmingly believe that these tax credits are not only an effective tool to combat climate change, but also benefit the economy and public health.

Support is overwhelming across all demographic and partisan groups, with 95% of Democrats, 86% of Independents and 83% of Republicans in favor. The poll also found that a candidate who supports extending clean energy tax credits sees up to a net 21-point boost relative to the generic ballot when matched against a candidate who opposes an extension.

“These are remarkable results,” said Andrew Baumann, Senior Vice President at Global Strategy Group. “Not only to see such overwhelming cross-partisan consensus at such a polarized time, but to see how many voters would shift their vote based on the issue.”

The findings complement a recent analysis by independent research firm Rhodium Group, which found that a robust clean energy tax package “could represent this Congress’ largest opportunity to advance clean energy and reduce emissions,” and that extending tax credits for solar and wind “could fill up to 25% of the gap between U.S. emissions under current policy and its Paris commitments.”

Analysis conducted by Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables similarly found that extending tax incentives for solar and other renewables will create more than 100,000 jobs, generate $87 billion in investment, and eliminate emissions equivalent to those of 93 coal plants.

Solar Energy Industries Association

”This survey finds bipartisan public support for tax policy that injects billions of dollars in investment into the economy and creates tens of thousands of jobs,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, President and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association. “The data clearly shows that candidates who take action to encourage improved air quality and address climate change will have a better chance of getting elected regardless of party affiliation.”

Sunrun

“Clean energy incentives like the Investment Tax Credit have given millions of people across the country access to solar and fueled innovation on batteries that provide backup power and support reliability,” said Alex McDonough, Sunrun’s Vice President for Public Policy. “Solar is still less than 3% of our nation's energy supply - now is not the time to walk away from this important policy.”

ACORE

“This poll highlights the reality that clean energy is a clear political winner,” said Gregory Wetstone, President and CEO of the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE). “Over 80% of Americans from across the political spectrum back clean energy tax incentives, and will support politicians who do the same. It’s another good reason for Congress to include clean energy tax incentives in any must-pass legislation this year.”

American Wind Energy Association

“We’re thrilled to see such strong bi-partisan voter support for renewable energy, especially as we enter election season when their voices are important to be heard. Policies that help grow wind and solar have been a great investment for Americans, leading to well-paying jobs in all 50 states, significant new growth opportunities in farming and factory towns and coastal communities along the eastern seaboard, and affordable clean energy.

"We hope members of Congress will heed their constituents’ call to action and extend tax credits for onshore and offshore wind, putting the industry a step closer to tax policy parity with other energy sources as it helps champion efforts to alleviate climate change.” Aaron Severn, Senior Director, Federal Affairs, American Wind Energy Association

Center for American Progress Action Fund

“Staving off our climate crisis requires that we take bold action to build a 100 percent clean future,” said Christy Goldfuss, senior vice president of Energy and Environment at the Center for American Progress Action Fund. “Not only are investments in clean energy solutions like solar, wind, and battery storage popular with the American public, they can create good-paying jobs, reduce our climate impact, and protect communities from harmful pollution.”

Environment America

"Americans want more clean energy because it just makes sense for our health, for clean air and water, and for the future of the planet," said Rob Sargent, Environment America's Clean Energy Program Director. "This poll shows why people from every part of the country are demanding swift action to keep up the momentum on renewable energy, energy efficiency and electric cars. We’re counting on legislative leaders to act before they adjourn for the year."

Environmental Defense Fund

“Americans overwhelmingly agree - tax incentives are a critical piece of the climate solutions puzzle. We must seize this opportunity for bipartisan action that will cut pollution and promote clean energy entrepreneurship.” Elizabeth Gore, Senior Vice President, Political Affairs, Environmental Defense Fund

League of Conservation Voters

"This poll demonstrates once again that clean energy is wildly popular with people across the country,” said Matthew Davis, League of Conservation Voters’ Legislative Director. “These findings should put wind in the sails of Congressional leaders to update and extend critical tax incentives for wind, solar, and energy storage this year.”

National Wildlife Federation

“Climate change is fueling severe storms, floods, fires and hurricanes — threatening people, wildlife and our way of life. We need to use every tool available to confront the climate crisis, including the tax code. This poll only underscores that Americans understand we need to invest in clean energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect wildlife before it’s too late.” Laura Daniel Davis, VP for Conservation Strategy, National Wildlife Federation

Sierra Club

"Clean energy tax credits are popular with Americans across the board because they bring hundreds of thousands of jobs nationwide while dramatically reducing the amount of harmful air, water and carbon pollution being produced in our communities. Congress should immediately seize this incredible economic, public health, and clean energy opportunity before the end of this year." Matthew Bearzotti, Deputy Legislative Director, Sierra Club

Union of Concerned Scientists

“The latest polling data from Global Strategy Group demonstrates enormous support for clean energy among the majority of voters in the 2020 election, regardless of their political affiliation. According to the poll, an astounding 89 percent of voters nationwide support federal tax incentives for solar, wind, and energy storage projects. A majority of voters feel such clean energy tax incentives will make a positive impact on public health, job creation, and the well-being of future generations – it’s up to Congress to deliver on that potential by passing tax incentives for clean energy before years’ end.” Rob Cowin, Director of Government Affairs, Climate & Energy, Union of Concerned Scientists.

Survey Findings Memo Available here

Survey Slides Available here

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