U.S. Senate Passes Groundbreaking Climate Bill

U.S. Capitol Building. Photo: Wally Gobetz via Flikr

August 7, 2022 (BOSTON, MA) The U.S. Senate has voted in favor of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. As written, the bill could cut a significant amount of climate-damaging pollution by 2030 while bolstering the economy through lowered energy costs and new jobs. Conservation law Foundation (CLF) released the following statement in response. 

“It’s no coincidence that this bill is moving forward at a time when large swaths of the country are baking in yet another heatwave,” said CLF President Bradley Campbell. “The IRA will help us slash emissions and bolster the country’s clean energy efforts to respond to the climate crisis at our doorsteps. However, this bill still doesn’t get us to where we need to be, so state action to reduce emissions is going to be critical in the years ahead.” 

The bill marks the first time real climate action has progressed this far in the federal legislature. It includes provisions for rebate programs to make electrifying homes and vehicles more affordable, funding for clean energy infrastructure to spur the transition off fossil fuels, and mandates to ensure fair-market wages and job training in the clean energy industry. It also provides funding for communities on the frontlines of climate change, which often include low-income or Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) communities. 

At the same time, the bill includes several troublesome provisions related to the expansion of fossil fuels. It will also only get the country part of the way towards meeting the necessary reduction in emissions, with no funding or path forward to get us the rest of the way. 

CLF experts are available for further comment.