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The Biggest Climate Change Bill In 2022 Pushes U.S. Energy To Become Green

When it comes to carbon dioxide emissions, the United States is far and away the leader, yet this biggest climate change bill in 2022 represents the country's first big step in mitigating those emissions. After 2035, gas-powered vehicles will be banned in California and other states.

Daisy-Mae Schmitt
Dec 16, 2022116 Shares19368 Views
When it comes to carbon dioxide emissions, the United States is far and away the leader, yet this biggest climate change bill in 2022represents the country's first big step in mitigating those emissions. After 2035, gas-powered vehicles will be banned in California and other states.
Hydrofluorocarbons, which are used in air conditioning and refrigerators, contribute to global warming, thus the United States accepted a convention to reduce their production. The European Union is finishing up a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55 percent by 2030, compared to levels in the 1990s. There has been victory after victory in the legislature.
The Decarbonization and Energy Independence Act (IREIA) allocates $369 billion toward expediting the transition to renewable energy sources and reducing the economy's reliance on fossil fuels. The measure will aid in reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by around 40 percent by the end of the decade. Activists hope the law will be a helping hand in addressing the climate issue, but they recognize it is not a silver bullet.

The Inflation Reduction Act

After more than a year of ups and downs as Democrats struggled to unify behind a package that might pass the House and Senate, President Biden signed this act in August.
About $370 billion in additional expenditure on various tax credits and incentives is included in the law's climate and energy measures to promote the development of renewable energy, electric cars, and other related technologies. The legislation is heavily weighted with industrial policy, providing incentives for the domestic production of sustainable energy components.
Certainly as big a step in the right direction as we’ve had in a long time.- Corey Schrodt, Niskanen Center, legislative affair manager for climate at Niskanen Center, Washington, D.C.
In his view, the last time Congress passed significant energy legislation was in 2005 with the signing of the Energy Policy Act by President George W. Bush. Significant financing for renewable energy production and research was included in the statute, which amounted to more than $20 billion in today's money. Like the pushback to the fossil-fuel-friendly provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act, this bill featured incentives for biofuels and fossil fuels.
Conclusion: enacting energy legislation in Congress is really difficult, he added. This is due to party differences and the competing priorities of key sectors when it comes to defining effective energy policy. Advocates are often left dissatisfied by the final versions of measures that do pass because crucial features are left out. The Inflation Control Act unquestionably fit this description.
Rules to streamline the permitting of energy projects were among the major provisions that were ultimately left on the cutting room floor due to opposition from both Democrats and Republicans. According to Schrodt, this creates a vacuum that will make it harder to construct the renewable energy and interstate power lines necessary for a clean energy transition.
Despite certain drawbacks, the Inflation Reduction Act has helped set the tone for the rest of this decade in terms of both financing and policy support.

How climate bill pushes Americans to go green

Facilitating For Cheaper Clean Energy

By providing tax credits that lower the cost for businesses to use sustainable energy, the legislation hopes to facilitate and incentivize the transition away from fossil fuels. For instance, tax incentives exist that may cover as much as 30 percent of the total cost of switching to solar electricity for small enterprises.
The legislation's $9 billion in incentives for gas-to-electric equipment conversions, such as electric induction cooktops and heat pump water heaters, are meant to assist customers as well. Tax benefits for the purchase of electric vehicles may reach $7,500 per household.
Scientists like Princeton's Denise Mauzerall, who studies the atmosphere, see tremendous promise in the bill to boost sustainable energy. However, she stresses the need of investing in enough infrastructure to transport this energy if the United States is to reap the benefits of its expanded clean energy capability. Overhead power lines and other energy transmission methods get little funding from the measure.

Increasing Jobs And Reducing Pollution

The creation of well-paying jobs in emerging sectors like solar and wind power is essential to the objective of creating a sustainable energy economy. In order to qualify for the maximum amount of rebates, businesses must comply with "prevailing wage" requirements and have apprentices put in a certain number of hours per week working on renewable energy projects.
The Act also promotes investments in the local production of sustainable energy products. Companies that manufacture or recycle wind turbine blades, solar panels, energy storage devices, and other clean energy items are eligible for tax credits of up to 30 percent, and there are subsidies available to retool facilities to produce electric automobiles.
Methane is another focus since it is a greenhouse gas that can trap heat at a rate 25 times higher than CO2. $850 million is set aside in the law to monitor and reduce methane emissions from fossil fuel production. Furthermore, it imposes a penalty for businesses that emit more than 25,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalent to methane per year.
In addition, the Clean Air Act specifically authorizes the Environmental Protection Agency to issue regulations concerning CO2 emissions.
However, as Mauzerall points out, the climate crisis is much more than just cleaning up the polluting energy sector of the present. More effort going ahead, she argues, must be put into decreasing emissions from farms. The agricultural sector is responsible for around 11% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and 30% of worldwide emissions.

Final Words

Climate justice is a movement that addresses the disproportionate effects of climate change on vulnerable populations, and it is expected to receive billions of dollars in funding.
New offshore oil and gas leases are legalized, and fossil fuel corporations are given tax breaks for implementing carbon capture and sequestration technologies. It will be critical to follow through on these investments with regulations that enforce both climate justice and the clean energy transition, Garcia argues.
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