Event Highlighted Potential for Tax Credits to Spur Domestic Manufacturing of Materials Needed for Clean Energy Development
Steel of West Virginia and SOLV Energy today commemorated a 10-year partnership at an event featuring a facility tour. Steel of West Virginia supplies SOLV Energy with the steel piles used in solar energy projects around the country. The companies were joined by leaders from the United Steelworkers (USW), Huntington Mayor Steve Williams, Charlotte Weber, Director of the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI), West Virginia’s Manufacturing Technology Center, and a representative from the Office of Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV).
“Our union workforce makes steel products including high quality, hot-rolled carbon steel long products used in a wide variety of end markets, such as transportation, construction, heavy equipment, manufacturing, and—yes—energy, such as solar,” said Chuck Abbott, Vice President and General Manager of Steel of West Virginia. “Energy and manufacturing tax credits will provide the market certainty we need to continue to grow and provide American-made steel to the solar industry.”
“Over the last decade, we have bought $150 million in steel piles from the great team here at Steel of West Virginia,” said George Hershman, CEO of SOLV Energy. “The growth of our work, and industry, has been spurred by clean energy tax credits. These credits give developers the ability to invest in solar projects, and give manufacturers the confidence to invest in the U.S. and expand the production of critical materials—like steel—we need for these projects. Long-term business certainty around tax credits means the solar industry will continue to bring economic growth, jobs, and opportunities to small and large communities all across the country.”
Speakers highlighted the role that steel plays in the energy sector. They also focused on how manufacturing and energy tax credits—like those currently being discussed as part of the ongoing budget reconciliation talks in Congress—can encourage additional private sector investments, strengthening and broadening West Virginia’s and the country’s manufacturing base, preserving good, union jobs, and contributing to the nation’s economy.
An average utility-scale solar project uses 12,000 tons of steel and the U.S. solar industry alone is going to need millions of tons of steel each year. West Virginia steel serves as the backbone of many gigawatts of solar projects nationwide. The leaders said energy and manufacturing tax credits that incentivize American-made materials like steel will drive investment in factories and repatriating the U.S. energy supply chain, while giving developers the confidence needed to build energy projects. This will make the U.S. energy independent, strengthen domestic energy security, and create and support union jobs, according to the groups.
“As we look to the future, our nation must invest in the full spectrum of American manufacturing, and American workers are ready and willing to take on the challenge to build strong domestic supply chains,” said Chad Conley, USW District 8 Rapid Response coordinator. “This will not only create good, community-sustaining jobs, but also prevent us from having to rely on foreign nations for the materials and technology that we need to ensure our economic and national security.”
“Our goal is to use our Advanced Manufacturing Technology Centers across West Virginia to provide the resources that individuals and companies need to create, sustain, and expand their businesses,” said Charlotte Weber, Director of the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI), West Virginia’s Manufacturing Technology Center. “We know that West Virginia can be a leader in manufacturing the technologies we need to power the future of our state and country.”