On Friday, November 5, 2021, The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in a 228-206 vote. The passage follows the August 10 Senate passage of the bill in a historic 69-30 bipartisan vote with every expectation that President Biden will sign the bill into law as soon as possible. The bill includes several provisions to improve interregional transmission policy and develop the high-voltage transmission capacity necessary to achieve a modern power system and a modern economy. However, significant additional investment is needed to achieve the new transmission capacity required for deep decarbonization.
“The bipartisan support for large-scale regional and interregional transmission sends a strong message to the industry and its regulators to get busy planning, permitting, and paying for new and expanded lines, and provides a wide variety of support in each of those areas. However, this level of funding in the bipartisan bill is one or two percent of the total transmission investment needed for cost-effective decarbonization. As a result, there is a critical need for a transmission tax credit and other funding programs in the Build Back Better Act.” – Rob Gramlich, Executive Director, Americans for a Clean Energy Grid.
According to numerous studies, the U.S. will need to expand its existing electricity transmission by 2-3 times to meet decarbonization goals. Building out the transmission grid would lower electric sector emissions by 95 percent by 2050, create 6 million new jobs, and cut consumer’s electric bills by one third. The bipartisan bill is a positive first step towards investing in our nation’s grid infrastructure, but far more is needed to cost-effectively achieve the Administration’s target of power sector decarbonization by 2035.
About Americans for a Clean Energy Grid:
Americans for a Clean Energy Grid (ACEG) is the leading non-profit, broad-based public interest advocacy coalition focused on the need to expand, integrate, and modernize the North American high-voltage grid. ACEG brings together the diverse support for an expanded and modernized grid from business, labor, consumer and environmental groups, and other transmission supporters to support policy which recognizes the benefits of a robust transmission grid. For more information, please visit cleanenergygrid.org
Sabreen Ahmed, Communications Associate