This Week in Climate & Clean Energy Wins: Week of 12/15
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: December 15, 2022
CONTACT: Eden Alem, [email protected]
Thank you for reading our Weekly Wins roundup of clean energy achievements! This edition will be our last newsletter rounding up clean energy wins for the year. But don’t worry, we’ll start back up again next year. Have a happy and safe holiday season!
This Week in Climate & Clean Energy Wins: Week of 12/15:
See our state by state breakdown here.
THREE NUMBERS TO KNOW:
The number of homes powered annually through Stellanis and DTE Energy’s new solar projects.
The Biden Administration’s latest investment in 71 pilot climate projects under the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities, bringing their total investment in the program to over $3.1 billion.
The percent cost covered for heat pumps in low-income households through Inflation Reduction Act incentives.
The Biden Administration was busy this week securing climate wins, announcing over $325 million in new investments for climate programs under the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities, bringing their total investment to over $3.1 billion. The Department of Energy also announced a $2.5 billion loan to jump-start three lithium battery manufacturing hubs in Ohio, Tennessee, and Michigan, and announced plans to award $3.5 billion in prize money over the next five years for regional hubs aimed to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The Treasury Department and the IRS issued new guidance on tax credits, incentivizing at-home production for electric vehicles, and the Administration is advancing on their wind projects goal for 2025 to limit reliance on fossil fuels. Yesterday, the Department of Energy announced a major scientific breakthrough this week in the pursuit of abundant zero-carbon, a decades-long, multibillion-dollar study spanning back to the 1950s. In major news, the administration released its Inflation Reduction Act Guidebook, aimed at helping governments at all levels unlock the benefits of the Inflation Reduction Act, including its climate incentives.
The world’s largest energy companies made commitments that will create 600 jobs in Arizona and Texas, manufacture over 1 million EV chargers in the next three years, and produce enough in solar projects to power 130,000 homes annually. A new report outlines how the Inflation Reduction Act incentivizes energy upgrades and lowers costs for American homeowners, and state utilities are repurposing coal plants for clean energy use and training everyday Americans for over 3,200 jobs in the clean energy sector.
The world’s largest energy companies continue to make new commitments to solar projects and EV manufacturing, and several are joining an industry-led initiative to assess the use of clean hydrogen fuels:
- Stellanis and DTE Energy announced a new clean energy commitment, set to produce enough in solar projects to power 130,000 homes annually. [Yahoo Finance, 12/12/2022]
- A partnership through DTE’s MIGreenPower Program, the commitment will add 400 Megawatts of New Solar Projects in Michigan.
- ElectraMeccanica will be opening a new manufacturing facility, creating 500 new jobs in Mesa, Arizona. [12News Arizona, 12/12/2022]
- The facility will produce electric vehicles and serve as a corporate headquarters.
- Siemens is set to produce over 1 million EV chargers in the next three years. [Axios, 12/13/2022]
- The company will add 100 jobs at its Texas facility to meet demand and grow U.S. production.
- Many of the world’s largest energy companies are joining an industry-led initiative to measure the emissions footprint of “clean” hydrogen. [E&E News, 12/13/22]
- The Open Hydrogen Initiative was convened earlier this year, shortly before the Inflation Reduction Act established the first-ever production tax credits for lower-carbon hydrogen. This latest initiative underscores the financial stakes associated with use of hydrogen fuel.
A new report detailed how the Inflation Reduction Act incentivizes energy upgrades and lowers costs for American homeowners:
- A new report outlines that heat pumps are three to five times more energy efficient than traditional heating systems, and are helping families lower utility costs. [CNBC, 12/10/2022]
- Incentives from the Inflation Reduction Act cover 100% of the cost of a heat pump for low-income households and 50% of costs for moderate-income households. “These incentives are not only saving you money now and in the long run on your utility bills, but they are putting our economy on track to reduce consumption of fossil fuels that contribute to climate change. It’s a win-win.” said Miranda Leppla, director of the Environmental Law Clinic at Case Western Reserve University School of Law.
The Biden Administration announced over $2.8 billion in investments and loans for climate projects and battery manufacturing, issued new guidance on tax credits that will incentivize at-home production of EVs, released the first edition of the Inflation Reduction Act Guidebook, and announced a major scientific breakthrough in the pursuit of unlimited, clean power:
- The Biden Administration announced an additional $325 million in investments for 71 pilot projects under the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities, bringing their total investment to over $3.1 billion [U.S. Department of Agriculture press release, 12/12/2022]
- Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities funding is used to expand markets for American producers who leverage the greenhouse gas benefits of climate smart production.
- The U.S. Department of Energy announced the issuing of a $2.5 billion loan to jump start three lithium battery manufacturing hubs in Ohio, Tennessee, and Michigan. [CNN, 12/12/22]
- The loan is being granted to Ultium Cells LLC, a joint venture of General Motors and LG Energy Solutions, to make batteries for electric vehicles. General Motors has pledged to go all-electric by 2035, phasing out conventional gas and diesel-powered engines. US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said the loan will “jumpstart the domestic battery cell production needed to reduce our reliance on other countries to meet increased demand.”
- The Department of Energy released guidelines for awarding $3.5 billion for regional hubs scaling up systems to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. [E&E News, 12/14/22]
- The prize money, secured through the bipartisan infrastructure law. will be distributed over the next five years in an effort to shape the future of direct air capture technology.
- The Treasury Department and the IRS issued new guidance on electric-vehicle tax credits, incentivizing at-home production. [BloombergTax, 12/12/2022]
- The modifications provide a maximum $7,500 in credits only if the final vehicle assembly occurred in North America.
- The Biden Administration conducted an environmental review of an off-shore wind farm in Virginia, bringing the largest proposed ocean renewable project in the country one step closer to construction. [E&E News, 12/12/22]
- A joint venture between Ørsted A/S and Eversource Energy, the wind project would be among the first in the country. Progress made on this and other wind projects is part of the White House’s commitment to pushing 16 offshore wind arrays through by 2025 to limit the U.S.’ reliance on fossil fuels.
- The Department of Energy announced that for the first time, scientists have been able to produce a fusion reaction that creates a net energy gain, a major milestone in the pursuit of unlimited, clean power technology at an affordable price. [The Washington Post, 12/11/22]
- Scientists have been chasing this development since the 1950s. While still a long way from being available for commercial use, it is an affirmation of major investments made by the government over time.
- The White House released the first version of the Inflation Reduction Act guidebook, aimed at informing all levels of government, individuals, businesses and community partners of how to unlock the legislation’s clean energy investments. [The New York Times, 12/15/22]
On the state level, Michigan is exploring repurposing coal plants to clean energy and New Jersey is offering job training for over 3,200 new jobs in the clean energy sector:
- Consumers Energy is evaluating the potential for clean energy production at former coal plants in the state of Michigan. [MI Biz, 12/12/2022]
- The state’s second largest utility could repurpose two coal plants with clean energy to support the utility’s goal of building 8,000 MW of new solar power by 2040.
- Public Service Enterprise Group partnered with Real World Academy to train New Jersey residents for jobs in the clean energy sector. [PV Magazine, 12/12/22]
- The initiative is expected to create 3,200 new jobs.