Statement: Energy Sector Innovation Credit (ESIC) Act Gives Support for Nuclear and Other Clean Energy Innovation

Berkeley, Calif. — Today, Breakthrough Institute Senior Nuclear Analyst Dr. Adam Stein issued the following statement applauding the introduction of the Energy Sector Innovation Credit (ESIC) Act, introduced by Senators Crapo (R-ID) and Whitehouse (D-RI). Senators Barasso (R-WY), Bennet (D-CO), Risch (R-ID), and Hickenlooper (D-CO) are cosponsors. Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representatives Reed (R-NY) and Panetta (D-CA).

“It is difficult for innovative technologies to move into a mature market, especially large infrastructure projects. The ESIC Act targets support for these innovative and early-stage clean energy technologies that are critical to modernize our energy infrastructure, including nuclear energy,” Dr. Adam Stein remarked.

“Specifically, the ESIC Act will diversify and increase the US’s energy generation portfolio and security by providing tax credits to new and emerging clean energy technologies. The flexible design allows developers to choose the tax credit options that best fit their technology and business model. Importantly, by promoting private sector innovation in clean energy technology, public and private sector market participation will invest in the US’s capability to lead the world in clean energy innovation.”

“With new tax credits for clean energy technologies at an early development stage, this bill expedites the decarbonization of our power grid. These subsidies are most effective not only as a standalone decarbonization policy but as a temporary tool in technology innovation policy. As the Breakthrough Institute noted in a recent report, federal tax resources are limited, it is critical that incentives are directed at early-stage technologies that contribute to a clean energy system including offshore wind, enhanced geothermal, advanced nuclear, and carbon removal.”

“Finally, I, along with the Breakthrough Institute, am encouraged to see Senators Crapo and Whitehouse paving the way for the next generation of nuclear energy technology.”

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