NV Clean Energy Hub
Lydia Ball, Executive Director
Clean Energy Project
With a very special thanks to the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy,
the American Wind Energy Association, the Solar Energy Industries Association, and the Geothermal Energy Association, for their contributions to this white paper.
Clean energy investment in Nevada has accelerated rapidly in the past five years and is now well over a $5 billion investment in Nevada, an economic success story that is symbolized this year by three major trade associations holding their annual events in the state.
The Renewable Energy Tax Abatement program administers Nevada’s renewable energy tax abatements, extended by the Nevada Legislature in 2009 and transferred to the Governor’s Energy Office's jurisdiction in 2011. The program awards partial sales and use tax and partial property-tax abatements to eligible renewable energy producers. Because of this foresight in incentivizing the clean energy industry, Nevada has been able to track the importance of their investments in the industry, ensuring the program is benefit to Nevada taxpayers.
The Renewable Energy Tax Abatement program has been a crucial tool in attracting investment in Nevada, ensuring Nevadans receive not only the tax income of a growing industry but also receives job creation through this industry. Projects that receive a tax abatement hire at least 50 percent Nevada workers, pay 175 percent of Nevada’s average wage and offer healthcare benefit to the workers and their dependents. The projects that receive an abatement from the Governor’s Office of Energy, created just under 3,000 direct construction jobs paying an average wage of $37.30 an hour.
The Renewable Energy Tax Abatement program boasts 1,500 megawatts (MW) of clean energy projects currently in late development stages or constructed making Nevada the heartbeat of the clean energy industry. In just four years, Nevada has accepted applications for abatements on 1,176 MW of solar energy from photovoltaic or solar thermal technologies, putting Nevada third among all states in solar per capita. With more than 566 total MW of geothermal power, Nevada ranks second in the U.S. for overall generation of geothermal energy and number one on a per capita basis.
Nevada’s large-scale wind project, the Spring Valley Wind Farm, now generates enough energy for 45,000 homes and additional wind developments are currently underway. Due to Nevada’s vast solar, wind, geothermal and biomass resources, the state has excelled at meeting demand in and out of it’s borders leading to signifi clean energy capital investments. As of 2014, Nevada has 480 MW5 of clean energy developed or being developed to meet its energy demand and 985 MW6 of clean energy exported to other states.
The cumulative capital investments for projects sold to in-state and out-of-state customers, including trans- mission lines to move the clean electrons, total $5.5 billion since 2010.3 Nevada’s Investment of $500 million in tax abatements has attracted $5.5 billion of capital investment in clean energy projects to the state resulting in a 10 to 1 return on its investment. Additionally, Nevada will receive just over $820 million in employment and property benefit from these projects.
Acknowledging the state’s importance to clean energy, Nevada leaders, the wind, solar, and geothermal energy industries will each hold a major annual event in Nevada this year.
The American Wind Energy Association will bring North America’s leading wind energy conference and exposition, WINDPOWER, to the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, May 5-8, 2014.
The Geothermal Energy Association will hold its National Geothermal Summit in Reno, Aug. 5-6, 2014.
The National Clean Energy Summit 7.0 will be held in Las Vegas in early September 2014. Senator Reid will be announcing the event soon.
The Solar Energy Industries Association will hold its annual event, Solar Power International, at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Oct. 20-23, 2014.
Read the full report by downloading it here.