Tester leveling the playing field for renewable energy companies

Senator’s bipartisan bill allows companies to raise more money, create jobs

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester is giving Montana’s renewable energy companies a fair shot at raising the money needed to responsibly develop the state’s natural resources and increase America’s energy security.

Tester is backing the bipartisan Master Limited Partnership Parity Act to allow renewable energy companies access to the same financial tools that help oil and gas companies invest in new energy projects. 

“Government shouldn’t be in the business of picking winners and losers,” Tester said.  “This bill levels the playing field so investors can judge energy companies and their projects based on their merits, not their tax status.”

Master limited partnerships combine the funding advantages of corporations with the tax advantages of partnerships, allowing energy companies to more easily raise capital at lower costs.  These partnerships are currently only available to investors in oil, natural gas, coal, and pipeline projects.

“The MLP Parity Act is a phenomenal idea,” said David Crane, the president of NRG Energy, the nation’s largest solar power developer.  “It’s a fairly arcane part of the tax law, but it’s worked well and has been extremely beneficial to private investment in the oil and gas space.  The fact that it doesn’t currently apply to renewables is just a silly inequity in our current law.”

“No energy companies should be asked to operate with one hand tied behind its back,” Tester added.  “That’s not how we create jobs or increase our energy security.”

In addition to NRG Energy, Tester’s bill has also been endorsed by numerous energy associations, including the American Wind Energy Association, the Biomass Power Association, and the Advanced Biofuels Association.

Tester recently called for the Interior Department to implement his bipartisan blueprint to bring more renewable energy jobs to Montana and lay out a clear energy development strategy.  He has also voted to responsibly build the Keystone XL pipeline three times.

Tester’s bipartisan bill, which is cosponsored by Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), is available online HERE.