President Biden’s latest Build Back Better framework gives boost to solar industry

President Joe Biden speaks during a visit to the NREL Flatirons Campus in Arvada, Colorado. Photo by Werner Slocum, NREL.

After hearing input from all parties and negotiating in good faith with Senators Manchin and Sinema, the Congressional leadership and many members of Congress, President Biden announces a framework for the Build Back Better Act.

President Biden is confident this is a framework that can pass through both houses of Congress, and he looks forward to signing it into law. He calls on Congress to pass this landmark bill – in addition to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act – as soon as possible.

This framework will guide the drafting of legislative language. When enacted, this framework will put the United States on track to meet its climate goals, create millions of high-paying jobs, enable more Americans to join and stay in the workforce, and drive the economy from the bottom up. to grow from below.

The solar industry can benefit from this latest iteration of the plan, with $555 billion allocated to clean energy and climate investments. Specifically, the Build Back Better framework will:

  • Offer significant consumer discounts and help middle-class families save money as they move to clean energy and electrification. The consumer discounts and credits included in the Build Back Better framework will save the average American family hundreds of dollars a year on energy costs. These measures include improving and expanding existing tax credits for energy and efficiency for homes, as well as establishing a new electrification-focused discount program. The framework includes an extension of tax credits for utilities and clean energy for homes by 10 years and will reduce the cost of installing solar on the roof for a home by approximately 30%, reducing the payback period by approximately five years. ; and the framework’s electric vehicle tax credit will cut the cost of an electric vehicle made in America with American materials and union labor by $12,500 for a middle-class family. In addition, the framework will help rural communities unlock clean energy opportunities through targeted grants and loans through the Ministry of Agriculture.
  • Ensure that clean energy technology – from wind turbine blades to solar panels to electric cars – will be built in the United States with steel and other American-made materials, creating hundreds of thousands of good jobs here at home. The Build Back Better legislation will focus on incentives to grow domestic supply chains in solar, wind and other critical industries in communities on the front lines of the energy transition. In addition, the framework will strengthen the competitiveness of existing industries, such as steel, cement and aluminum, through grants, loans, tax credits and procurement to drive capital investment in decarbonising and revitalizing U.S. manufacturing.
  • Promote environmental justice through a new clean energy and sustainability accelerator that will invest in projects across the country, while delivering 40% of the investment benefits to underprivileged communities, as part of the President’s Justice40 initiative. The framework will also fund the electrification of ports; facilitate the deployment of cleaner transport, buses and trucks; and support critical community capacity building, including grants to communities on environmental justice. In addition, the framework will create a new civilian climate corps – with more than 300,000 members resembling America. This diverse new workforce will preserve our public lands, strengthen community resilience and address the changing climate, while bringing high-paying union jobs within reach of more Americans.
  • Strengthen resilience and natural solutions to climate change through a historic investment in coastal restoration, forest management and soil conservation. The framework will provide farmers, ranchers and forest owners with resources to support their efforts to reduce emissions. At its peak, the increased investment in climate-smart agriculture alone could add up to about 130 million hectares of arable land per year, representing as many as 240,000 farms. Farmers, ranchers and forest owners have long demonstrated environmental stewardship leadership with strategies that benefit the farm, the environment and the public. These investments will help meet the farming community’s demand for conservation support and enable producers to realize the full potential of climate benefits from agriculture.

The future of this framework will be determined by the legislator in the coming weeks.

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