The Production Tax Credit is an incentive that rewards a wind energy generation facility for the energy it produces during the first 10 years of its operation. It does this by giving the facility’s owner(s) a break on their taxes for each unit of energy produced (and nothing else) during that period. Once a wind farm qualifies for the PTC, it is guaranteed to receive that tax credit for the first 10 years of its operation.
Under the current PTC, all projects that begin construction during 2013 will qualify. If the PTC is not extended in future years, that will not prevent those existing, qualified projects from receiving the benefits they were guaranteed. In other words, even if the PTC is not extended in future years, it will not affect the economic viability of wind projects that began construction in 2013.