Senate passes $3.5T budget package with wins for clean energy, climate

On the heels of the U.S. Senate approving a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, the chamber acted early Wednesday morning to pass a sweeping $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation along party lines.

Both measures are now on pace for final congressional approval in the coming weeks – major victories in the Biden administration’s climate and renewable energy agenda.

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“We applaud the Senate for swiftly passing the FY22 Budget Resolution,” said Gregory Wetstone, president and CEO of the American Council on Renewable Energy. “As Monday’s IPCC report made painfully clear, the time for decisive action on climate is now. With a stable, long-term, full-value clean energy tax platform, the renewable industry will decarbonize the power sector and pave the way for a net-zero emissions economy.”

Budget reconciliation provides a roadmap for Senate committees to direct the funding toward initiatives over the next decade, including many that align with President Biden’s goal of 80% clean electricity and 50% economy-wide carbon emissions reductions by 2030.

Here are some of the top-line items for climate and renewable energy in the budget reconciliation:

Development of Clean Electricity Payment Program (referred to as the clean energy standard) that requires a stipulated amount of retail electricity sales to come from clean sources
Consumer rebates to weatherize and electrify homes
Financing for domestic manufacturing of clean energy and auto supply chain technologies
Investments in clean vehicles
Extension of solar tax credits

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