The Treasury Grant Program (TGP) is a small, little-known component of the 2009 Recovery Act. TGP provides businesses that invest in renewable energy a 30% cash grant (parallel to the 30% tax credit tax credit individual taxpayers get when they go solar at home). But the TGP is set to expire at the end of the year, unless Congress votes to extend it.
The TGP has awarded a total of $396 million for commercial solar projects, and the results are enough to make a coal lobbyist blush: TGP grants have created 20,000 new jobs, and the funded projects together generate 200 MW of solar electricity. $396 million is a pittance compared to the $73 billion in subsidies the fossil fuel industries raked in between 2002 and 2008 or the $14 billion for ethanol during that same period.
Extending TGP through 2012 is crucial for ensuring continued growth of solar during the remainder of the recession. Congress will be voting on this soon so send your senator an e-mail today! Let’s make sure all the little boys and all the little girls across the land get solar in time for Christmas.