The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) was enacted in the fall of 2021 and was followed less than a year later by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), the latter including $369 billion in climate investment. Together, they comprise the Biden administration’s clean energy plan. EDF Action championed these landmark laws.

BIL is a long-term plan to rebuild the country’s roads and bridges, help ensure clean drinking water, provide expanded high-speed internet access to communities everywhere, bring forth environmental justice and stand up programs that will secure climate wins.

It’s BIL investment that is helping to plug orphaned wells in fossil fuel drilling communities from east to west that have long been abandoned, leaving residents to suffer their polluting impacts. BIL dollars are also cleaning the air by supporting the purchase of electric school buses by school districts large and small in states across the nation, leaving dirty diesel emissions in the rear-view mirror. The Law is also underpinning a national network of charging stations for electric vehicles that will supercharge adoption of these zero-emission vehicles as they do their part toward cleaner air.

The IRA, signed into law in August 2022, provides an unparalleled opportunity to tackle climate change as we redesign our energy system by replacing dirty and unsustainable fossil fuels with a clean energy economy that will provide jobs and investment, reduce harmful pollution, improve our health and make us more energy secure. EDF Action followed this consequential legislation every step of the way to help ensure its passage.

IRA investments are massive at scale and, at the same time, personal, with the move toward electric vehicles a perfect example. U.S. electric vehicle manufacturing investments and jobs have grown exponentially since the IRA was signed into law. Over $100 billion in announced EV and EV battery manufacturing investments occurred in the first 18 months after passage of the IRA, supporting nearly 100,000 announced jobs during the same period. While this manufacturing and economic renaissance is a boon to dozens of states, the IRA is benefiting EV consumers directly in the form of a cash-in-hand $7,500 rebate for new EV purchases and $4,000 for a used EV. The total cost of ownership of an EV can save tens of thousands of dollars more over a gas-powered vehicle since electricity is a much less expensive way to power a vehicle and these zero-emission vehicles require little maintenance.

Personal cost savings thanks to the IRA extend to energy efficiency home improvements, all-electric appliances and heat pumps as well as solar panels. Simply adding insulation is a tried-and-true way to prevent wasted energy and save money on utility bills.

One of the clean energy plan’s most important benefits is its investment in environmental justice. Black, Hispanic and Indigenous communities and communities of low wealth face an enormous and unjust pollution burden as polluting industries – and their climate impacts – are often located near them. The clean energy plan commits $60 billion to support these communities by helping to clean up Superfund sites, improve air monitoring capacity, reduce pollution at ports, and directly invest in community-led initiatives through block grants. Ensuring that clean energy plan investments in overburdened communities are implemented in a just and equitable manner is vital to the plan’s success and the well-being of our communities.