Build Back Better Act Includes $555 Billion Toward Climate Action

(Credit: White House)

by | Oct 28, 2021

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(Credit: White House)

President Biden has introduced the Build Back Better Act, which includes a $555 billion investment in tackling climate change and other environmental and sustainability goals that are the largest of their kind in United States history.

The framework aims to start cutting pollution now and has a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by more than a gigaton by 2030. The administration says those cuts are at least 10 times larger than any legislation Congress has passed on the topic and will help the US cut emissions by up to 52% by 2030 based on 2005 levels.

The administration also says this would be the largest single financial investment toward clean energy in the country’s history. The money will go toward efficient buildings, transportation, industry, electricity and agriculture. The legislation intends to reduce energy costs and advance environmental justice.

The Biden Administration continues to make climate and sustainability goals a big part of its focus.

Earlier this month it released a comprehensive strategy to take on climate change and help businesses and supply chains address growing risks from issues like extreme weather events. In March Biden announced a $2 trillion jobs and infrastructure plan that puts $100 billion toward upgrading the country’s power infrastructure and another $174 billion toward electric vehicles.

The proposed legislation would target incentives to help grow US supply chains in solar, wind and other industries regarding energy transition. The administration hopes the bill will boost competitiveness in industries like steel, cement and aluminum through grants, loans and tax credits to spur investment in decarbonization of manufacturing.

The framework comes as pressure continues to mount on regulation regarding climate issues. This week 160 companies and investors sent a letter to Congress calling for ambitious climate polices.

“Despite difficult and complex negotiations among lawmakers, the final result presents an opportunity to make the significant investments in the U.S. technologies, manufacturing, and supply chains we need to address the climate crisis, advance justice, and achieve our economic goals,” says Anne Kelly, Ceres vice president of government relations.

The framework will fund port electrification and utilize cleaner transportation, including buses and trucks. Biden said at a press conference on the act that it will double electric vehicles in the US within three years and add 500,000 charging stations.

According to the framework, $320 billion will go toward clean energy tax credits for utility and residential users, transmission and storage, passenger and commercial vehicles and clean energy manufacturing. Another $105 billion will go toward resiliency investments including efforts to address extreme weather.

Clean energy technology, manufacturing and supply chains will get $110 billion, and $20 billion will go toward clean energy procurement.

The framework also lays out plans to advance environmental justice through a Clean Energy and Sustainability Accelerator that will invest in projects around the country and invest 40% of the benefits from climate efforts to disadvantaged communities as part of President Biden’s Justice40 initiative.

Additionally, the framework offers consumer and agriculture benefits as well as investment in coastal restoration, forest management, and soil conservation.

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