Inflation Reduction Act’s tax credits could reshape Idaho’s energy landscape – Idaho Capital Sun

by | Aug 31, 2022 | Energy

Almost all utilities across the United States and the rest of the world operate their energy infrastructure on a real-time basis — meaning people are monitoring an energy grid at all times to respond to weather events and customer demand.
That on-demand status makes it difficult to switch to renewable energy sources after the sun goes down or the wind stops blowing.
“It’s the biggest misunderstanding in our business and with our customers, is people think we store energy, and we don’t,” said Adam Richins, chief operating officer of Idaho Power. “Less than 5%, maybe less than 2% is stored using lithium-ion batteries. Otherwise, it is absolutely all real time.”
But now that the federal Inflation Reduction Act is law, that could change for Idaho’s largest utility provider. The existing tax credit for building and using battery storage systems will not only increase from 26% to 30% and remain at 30% until 2034, but the eligibility will expand to allow for general electrical grid use, not just batteries tied to wind and solar farms.
It’s one of many pieces of the $770 billion bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate on party-line votes. Reps. Mike Simpson and Russ Fulcher, R-Idaho, and Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch, R-Idaho, all voted no.
Much of the bill is related to renewable energy and efforts to reduce emissions, with other provisions related to health care and prescrip …

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