Section 179D: Leveraging the Energy Efficiency Deduction for Commercial Buildings

Navigating Details of Full or Partial Tax Breaks on New or Improved Structures and Systems

Recording of a 110-minute CPE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Program Materials

This teleconference will prepare tax advisors and professionals to analyze the pros and cons of the Section 179D deduction for commercial buildings and outline approaches to claim the largest possible deduction at the most advantageous time.


The federal Section 179D deduction for investing in energy efficiency systems and projects for both new and existing commercial buildings is one of the most broadly applicable, if underutilized, tax breaks available for U.S. businesses. It is on the books through 2013, longer if Congress extends it.

However, tax professionals must thoroughly understand the standards for cutting energy consumption; differing deduction percentages for the building "envelope," HVAC, water heater and interior lighting; and availability of a partial deduction.

Tax pros and advisors must also navigate on-point guidance, like a 2011 IRS revenue procedure allowing deductions for prior year investments on current year returns. Advisors experienced with this deduction will brief you on the bottom line of the Code section and guidance—and the advantages and pitfalls.

Listen as our panelists provide you an in-depth review of the potential tax benefits of, and difficulties with, the Section 179D deduction.



  1. Future outlook for the 179D deduction
    1. Support in Congress, given cutbacks in green and renewable energy incentives
  2. Qualifying terms
  3. IRS guidance
  4. Energy studies


The panel will explore these and other relevant topics:

  • Deduction amounts and qualifications.
  • How architects and engineers, as well as building owners, can qualify.
  • Meeting standards for cutting energy consumption, and obtaining a partial deduction.
  • Timing the deduction claim.
  • When and why an independent energy study is needed.

Following the speaker presentations, you'll have an opportunity to get answers to your specific questions during the interactive Q&A.


Julio Gonzalez
Julio Gonzalez
Founder and CEO
Engineered Tax Services

His firm works on a number of engineering, architecture and accounting engagements, frequently involving energy tax...  |  Read More

Eric Smith
Eric Smith

Tax Partner
Beene Garter

He has more than 15 years of experience on tax planning and compliance engagements, and works routinely on Sect. 179D...  |  Read More

C.J. Aberin
C.J. Aberin


He oversees the firm's Green Building Tax Incentive Practice and has performed incentive and cost segregation studies...  |  Read More

Ronald Wainwright, Jr.
Ronald Wainwright, Jr.

Cherry Bekaert & Holland

Mr. Wainwright has more than 25 years of tax advisory experience and works with multi-national, public and closely...  |  Read More

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