Today in Cleantech

It’s Friday — do you know what your Congress is doing? Here’s the latest out of Washington D.C. on greentech issues facing a Dec. 31 deadline amidst a frantic lame duck session. Good news for ethanol makers, as a one-year renewal of a 49 cent-per-gallon tax incentive has been included in a Senate tax bill. As for those stimulus-era grants in lieu of tax credits for wind and solar power projects, after a round of intense industry lobbying pressure, they’ve been included in the Senate tax bill as well. Not every greentech wish list item made it in, though — clean energy manufacturing credits seem to be left out. As for greentech research, a House bill would keep all science funding flat for next year, a figure that includes the $300 million the Obama Administration requested for its ARPA-E greentech research grant program. But it doesn’t come anywhere close to adding the $16 billion a year or so called for by high-profile greentech investors and supported by Energy Secretary Steven Chu to boost the United States’ competitiveness against countries like China.