Of all federal programs, one is working exactly as designed: the solar investment tax credit, which is creating jobs and energy independence while lowering energy costs for Mainers. But this crucial incentive for solar is about to be phased out. Today 250,000 Americans are employed in the solar industry, more than double from a decade ago. These are good jobs with solid pay and benefits that can’t be offshored because they’re constructing clean energy projects in our communities across America.

I know because I work at ReVision Energy alongside 400 other Mainers in the solar industry who owe our jobs in part to the solar investment tax credit, which has spurred billions in private investment in renewable energy. Our government has a long history of supporting industries deemed important. That’s why every year, hundreds of millions in tax breaks go to benefit coal, oil and gas corporations. Those incentives for carbon-based fuels roll along year after year uninterrupted, yet oddly, federal support for clean energy begins sunsetting Jan. 1 and ends entirely for homeowners in 2022.

There’s a move in Congress to extend the federal investment tax credit for solar. This policy has helped solar energy become one of America’s fastest-growing industries – reducing our dependency on polluting fossil fuels and strengthening our economy. Now is not the time to put the brakes on clean energy. Ask your U.S. senators and representatives to support the solar investment tax credit that benefits all Mainers and Americans.

Phil Coupe

co-founder, ReVision Energy

Cape Elizabeth

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