Environmentalists push back against freeze on solar tax credits | News

Environmentalists push back against freeze on solar tax credits


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With the state's lawmakers considering plans to reduce or eliminate solar tax credits, environmentalists and some legislators are pushing back. 

Environment N.C., a statewide nonprofit that focuses on environmental preservation, will release a report Thursday called "Lighting the Way." The report will highlight the state's "progress in solar energy innovation," said Rachel Morales, spokeswoman for the group.

The legislative discussion about solar tax credits is particularly compelling today, as the U.S. Environmental Protection agency has ordered North Carolina to reduce its carbon emissions by 36 percent by 2030. This leads to all sorts of grousing about the EPA, which hasn't been criticized this much since "Ghostbusters." You might have forgotten, but aside from the ghosts, the EPA was the villain in that film. 

Environment N.C. will roll out the report with state representatives Pricey Harrison, a Democrat from Guilford County, and Charlie Jeter, a Republican from Mecklenburg County. Thursday's event begins at 9:30 a.m. at the legislative building in Raleigh. 

The N.C. Department of Revenue says the credit, which can help to reduce the cost of solar array installation, helped generate more than $700 million in spending in the state last year, but some conservative lawmakers say it's a means of draining state tax coffers. State residents and companies claimed more than $126 million in credits last year. 

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