Consortium Statement on the Inflation Reduction Act
The Inflation Reduction Act, the climate bill just passed by Congress, is a long awaited, hard fought, and historic legislative victory. It provides $369 billion for climate and energy programs that will transform the US response to climate change and accelerate the clean energy transition. The Consortium celebrates this breakthrough and recognizes climate health advocates and the broad-based climate advocacy community for playing a significant role in getting this measure over the finish line.
The Consortium also recognizes that some provisions in the bill have the potential to adversely affect those who are already impacted by a legacy of environmental injustice through proximity to fossil fuel drilling and extraction. The health community has a stronger imperative than ever to help prevent increases in fossil fuel production, which is still possible through preventive action from the Administration, legal challenges, and continued activism. We are committed to working with partners to ensure that this law and the Infrastructure Act are implemented with health equity at the center.
Below is a list of the key provisions*
- Tax credits for low-carbon and renewable energy that are extended an additional 10 years and greatly expanded to domestic manufacturing for a variety of technologies like solar and battery storage. Nonprofits and entities without enough tax liability will also now be able to monetize the tax credits, and there are bonus credits for building projects in low-income communities and for using union labor.
- Tax credits and grants to states and utilities for reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
- Extended tax incentives for the purchase of new and used electric vehicles
- $1 billon for electric school buses and public buses.
- $9 billion to help lower energy costs for individuals with rebates for buying/retrofitting homes with energy efficient and electric appliances
- Tax credits for purchase of heat pumps, rooftop solar, HVAC/water heating systems
- $60b for communities with disproportionate burdens of pollution, for low-emission technologies, and to mitigate effects of highway placement, bus depots, and construction project
- $1.5 to promote methane detection and measurement in the oil and gas sector
- Starting in 2024, a fee of up to $1500 per ton on methane emissions from oil, gas producers & pipeline operators
- Funding to monitor and mitigate air pollution, including in schools
- $20b for agriculture programs to cut emissions from livestock and crops
- Research and loan funding for hard-to-decarbonize sectors like airline aviation fuel
The compromise provisions:
- Expansion of tax credits for carbon capture and sequestration—a technology often used to increase oil extraction.
- A commitment to expand fossil fuel infrastructure by resuming leasing for fossil fuel drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska.
- A pledge to remove environmental permitting obstacles currently blocking natural gas pipelines.
*From the modeling available, it’s estimated that the IRA will mean 3,700-3,900 avoided deaths in 2030, 99,000-100,000 avoided asthma attacks, and 405,000-417,000 avoided lost workdays.
Want to learn more about the IRA? We’ve compiled a list of resources and a summary of the law, available here.