Renewable Energy Companies Feel Election Uncertainty
Renewable energy companies gathering at the Renewable Energy Finance Forum in San Francisco on Thursday say their industry has become a political football in the presidential campaign – and that’s making some investors nervous.
The two candidates have stated differing views on the government’s role in renewable energy.
Just take the Production Tax Credit, an incentive used heavily by the wind industry that expires at the end of the year. President Obama is for it. GOP challenger Romney is against it.
Wind companies are reporting layoffs as a result and investors have picked up on that uncertainty.
"We’re in this stalled situation because nobody knows," says Nancy Hartsoch of SolFocus, a San Jose solar manufacturer. She says they’re still feeling the effects of the Solyndra bankruptcy, but the industry is on track for record growth.
"Renewable energy is becoming more cost effective. So by nature, in a lot of ways, this industry is going to grow whether Washington likes it or not," she says.
Last year, more money was invested in renewable energyinfrastructure than in fossil fuel infrastructure for the first time.