Today, the Interagency Working Group on Coal and Power Plant Communities and Economic Revitalization (Energy Communities IWG) hosted the second and final webinar in its series exploring the historic investments in the Inflation Reduction Act that benefit America’s energy communities. The two-part series “What the Inflation Reduction Act Means for Energy Communities” featured senior Biden-Harris Administration officials discussing multiple programs and tax credits relevant to energy communities.
“We are energized by the opportunities the Inflation Reduction Act presents to energy communities and workers across the nation. These momentous investments in clean energy infrastructure will create good-paying jobs and additional tax revenue streams, building a prosperous future for the next generation of energy workers and support for communities,” said Energy Communities IWG Executive Director Dr. Brian Anderson.
The Inflation Reduction Act will lower energy bills, create manufacturing jobs, invest in disadvantaged communities, address climate change and support energy communities building a clean energy economy. Webinar speakers discussed several key programs, including:
- The Energy Infrastructure Reinvestment (EIR) Program, which will guarantee loans to projects that retool, repower, repurpose, or replace energy infrastructure that has ceased operations, or enable operating energy infrastructure to avoid, reduce, utilize, or sequester air pollutants or anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases.
- Several U.S. Department of Agriculture programs, including the Powering Affordable Clean Energy (PACE) program, Empowering Rural America (New ERA) and Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).
- The Qualifying Advanced Energy Project Credit (48C) program, which provides up to $10 billion in tax credits to qualifying investments in clean energy technology manufacturing and recycling; industrial greenhouse gas emissions reductions; or critical minerals processing, refining and recycling.
- Inflation Reduction Act tax credits available through the U.S. Department of Energy and related tools like the Energy Community Tax Credit Bonus Map.
- The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, which will provide competitive grants to mobilize financing and leverage private capital for clean energy and climate projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions with an emphasis on projects that benefit low-income and disadvantaged communities.
- The $3 billion in Inflation Reduction Act investments to provide grants and technical assistance for activities advancing environmental and climate justice through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The White House released an Inflation Reduction Act Guidebook that provides an overview of the clean energy, climate mitigation and resilience, agriculture, and conservation-related tax incentives and investment programs, including who is eligible to apply for funding and for what activities. Energy communities can also access Inflation Reduction Act programs on the Energy Communities IWG funding clearinghouse.
Federal officials on the webinars include Lael Brainard, Director of the National Economic Council; Kristina Costa, Deputy Assistant to the President for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation; Clare Sierawski, Senior Energy Counselor, U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development; John McAuliff, Senior Advisor, U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development; Jigar Shah, Director, U.S. Department of Energy Loan Program Office; Matt Aks, Senior Advisor for Domestic Climate Policy, U.S. Department of Treasury; Matt Tejada, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Environmental Justice, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; Jahi Wise, Acting Director for Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and Kate Gordon, Senior Advisor to the Energy Secretary, U.S. Department of Energy.
Established by an Executive Order during President Biden’s first week in office, the Energy Communities IWG is pursuing a whole-of-government approach to create good-paying union jobs, spur economic revitalization, remediate environmental degradation and support energy workers in coal, oil and gas, and power plant communities across the country. The Energy Communities IWG supports the Administration’s goals of a carbon emission-free electricity sector by 2035 and economy-wide net-zero emissions by 2050.