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The Inflation Reduction Act drives big gains in US renewable energy

In less than a year, there's been a huge boost in demand for residential solar and deployment of new energy manufacturing.
The Inflation Reduction Act drives big gains in US renewable energy
Posted at 8:15 PM, Jul 24, 2023

Since the Inflation Reduction Act passed on August 16, 2022, the United States has seen new growth in energy and transport sectors which could help reduce the national carbon footprint.

Lawmakers designed the Inflation Reduction Act to give U.S. energy manufacturing a better edge against competitors like China, by improving domestic supply chains and targeting high-pollution sectors like U.S. transportation for overhaul.

The act brought a 30% discount on residential solar installations by way of a new tax credit.

It's spurred significant investment in electric vehicle and battery production: More than 80 clean energy manufacturing facilities have broken ground in the last year, representing more investment in one year than in the seven preceding years combined.

The law also brought in new support for batteries to help store more power from wind and solar sources, and more experimental technologies like hydrogen fuel.

Experts say the biggest impact of the law is likely to come over the next few years, as investment and consumer sentiment translates more into working products.

SEE MORE: Biden administration announces nearly $11 billion for renewable energy

Critically, the nationwide development of the Inflation Reduction Act is expected to cause notable changes in the trajectory of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

Emissions from transportation and electricity generation, respectively, are the two greatest shares of pollution in the U.S.

The act is expected to cut U.S. emissions by as much as 41% by 2030, according to recent analysis by Princeton University. The figure is short of the 50%-52% reduction the White House wants to achieve from 2005 emissions levels.

A transition toward more renewable energy requires that the U.S. grid adapt to new requirements: It will have to accept more input from new renewable installations, and meet increased demand from a rising share of electric vehicles.

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