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1/2/2015 - Blumenthal, Finch applaud clean energy tax credits extension at future solar and fuel cell site, urge Congress to make the tax credits permanent

 

“Bridgeport is showing the kind of dramatic leadership and direction that all of Connecticut and the country must show in terms of energy production. The term vision is given new meaning by what’s happening here. What we see is not only a vision of what’s there now, but what is to come.” – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal

Bridgeport, Conn. (January 2, 2015) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal and Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch joined business leaders at the site of the city’s Green Energy Park – a clean energy project consisting of 9,000 solar panels and a 2.8MW fuel cell atop an old landfill – in order to celebrate the extension of vital federal renewable energy tax credits.

“Bridgeport is showing the kind of dramatic leadership and direction that all of Connecticut and the country must show in terms of energy production,” Blumenthal said. “The term vision is given new meaning by what’s happening here. What we see is not only a vision of what’s there now, but what is to come.”

As part of a larger package of federal tax extensions, Congress voted last month to extend the Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit, providing key incentives for the production of solar, fuel cells, wind turbines, geothermal, hydropower, biomass, marine and hydrokinetic renewable energy plants. While the extension preserves critical tax benefits for clean energy through December 31, 2016, additional measures are needed to ensure continuity of the program for several years to come. The fuel cell and solar industry also rely on an Investment Tax Credit that was extended for eight years in 2008 (For more information on the Federal Renewable Energy Tax Credits, click here: http://bit.ly/1K7fTvz).

“What we’ve done in America is year-by-year provide tax credits for renewable energy. What we need to do is make those tax credits permanent so that people can plan. So that cities can have the kind of vision that Bridgeport does and implement that vision,” Blumenthal said.

The Green Energy Park project will be overseen by United Illuminating, and is expected to create up to 92 jobs and earn the city $7 million in tax revenue. It also will produce enough clean energy to power more than 5,000 homes. The project is set to break ground in February 2015.

“In Bridgeport, we are investing in the kind of future that will make our children and their kids want to live, work, and raise a family here, too,” said Mayor Finch. “Green Energy Park reaffirms our commitment to creating a future where our children have cleaner air to breath and good-paying jobs to support their families. I’d like to thank Senator Blumenthal and our entire federal delegation for their help in making this project happen. It just serves as another example of why Bridgeport is getting better every day.”

Others in attendance at today’s event include: State Representative Ezekiel Santiago, City Councilman Jack Banta, Co-Founder of NuPower Dan Donovan, Pullman & Comley Attorney Lee Hoffman, and Vice President of FuelCell Energy Kurt Goddard.

For more information about Bridgeport’s green jobs and clean energy initiatives, click here: http://bit.ly/1425znA.