July 30, 2012
Authors: Paul Schwabe and Michael Mendelsohn, NREL; Felix Mormann, Stanford Law School; Douglas J. Arent, JISEA
Financing renewable energy projects in the United States can be a complex process. Most equity investment in new renewable power production facilities is supported by tax credits and accelerated depreciation benefits and is constrained by the pool of potential investors that can fully use these tax benefits and are willing to engage in complex financial structures. For debt financing, non-government lending has largely been provided by foreign banks that may be under future lending constraints due to economic and regulatory conditions. To discuss renewable energy financing challenges and to identify new sources of capital to the U.S. market, two roundtable discussions were held with renewable energy and financing experts in April 2012. This report summarizes the key messages of those discussions and is designed to provide insights to the U.S. market and inform the international conversation on renewable energy financing innovations.