On March 31st in Pittsburgh, President Biden announced plans to pursue once-in-a-generation infrastructure legislation that would invest over $2 trillion in America’s roads, railways, water systems, and electricity infrastructure. The “American Jobs Plan” will do all that while creating good-paying U.S. jobs and mitigating the worst impacts of climate change.
Five important details that will move the U.S. forward on clean power:
Adopts a 100% Clean Electricity Standard (CES) by 2035: The CES is a market-based approach that would incrementally and predictably increase the amount of renewables on the grid. It would encourage private investment in new carbon pollution-free power plants, like wind and solar farms, while maintaining our country’s existing zero-emission hydropower and nuclear fleet. A CES will significantly reduce air pollution that harms Americans’ health and eliminates carbon emissions from the electricity sector—a big win in the world’s fight against climate change.
Outfit our national highways with a system of convenient, reliable electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure: Want an EV, but have range anxiety? Not anymore. This plan would establish nationwide access to EV charging, so you can drive an EV to work or across the country without going out of your way or running out of juice. The best part—coupled with the CES, these chargers would be 100% powered by zero-pollution electricity by 2035.
The federal government will operate 24/7 on clean electricity: The U.S. government has the opportunity to lead by example by putting its vast purchasing power to good use by securing 100% clean power for all federal buildings. This will drive new clean energy development across the country.
Extends tax incentives for clean energy generation and storage: Today, every major electricity source receives some form of tax incentive, but fossil fuel incentives are permanent, whereas renewables must renew their’s every few years. This proposal extends renewables’ production and investment tax credits for ten years, leveling the playing field for renewables and encouraging massive private investment in clean energy generation. These credits will help create quality jobs and sending clear signals to the market to invest in more clean power.
Incentivizes private investment in electricity infrastructure: Americans rely on a well-connected electric grid to keep the lights on. This proposal includes an investment tax credit or ITC for building new high voltage power lines needed to carry electricity far distances from where clean power is produced to where it’s used. This incentive will allow the U.S. to quickly direct investment dollars that are currently sitting on the sidelines. The plan will also improve coordination between agencies and allow for transmission lines to share right-of-ways with other infrastructure projects like roads and railways.
Simply put, this is a plan to put steel in the ground to build a clean infrastructure system that will be the envy of the world. We can’t afford to miss this moment. We’re staring in the face of a once in a generation opportunity for jobs and energy transformation.”
Heather Zichal, CEO of the American Clean Power Association
Americans are tired of potholes, crumbling bridges, and century-old power lines that don’t meet the needs of the 21st-century. We have the opportunity to dream bigger than before. The time has come for America to invest in itself and build back better than ever!
Want to learn more about how the “American Jobs Plan” will rebuild the U.S. and advance our 21st-century clean energy economy? Check out the Power Line, the new blog of the American Clean Power Association!