Published: 25 Sep 2020, 12:10
Legislation to help the US economy invest in clean energy jobs and support innovation and industry passed the House of Representatives this week – and Energy Storage Association (ESA) CEO Kelly Speakes-Backman applauded the prominent inclusion of energy storage in the bill.
Next stop for the Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act will be the upper house of US Congress, the Senate. The bill includes wide-ranging measures on: energy efficiency, renewable energy, carbon pollution reduction technologies, nuclear energy, the electric grid and cybersecurity, transportation, research and innovation, technology transfer, industrial innovation and competitiveness, critical materials and environmental justice.
Energy storage is mentioned prominently for its role in renewable energy, with the bill calling for consideration of energy storage systems and coordination of programmes in renewables integration, as well as the development of assistance programmes for energy storage and renewable-powered microgrid deployment.
Energy storage is also mentioned in the context of enhancing electric grid reliability and its relevance to the supply chain for critical raw materials – like Europe, the US has put lithium and other materials used in battery making onto a list of such materials.
“Today the U.S. House of Representatives moved definitively to elevate the priority of public innovation investments in energy storage. By passing H.R. 4447, the Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act, numerous bipartisan proposals for promoting energy storage are moving forward, including increasing R&D and demonstration investments in energy storage technology, integrating storage across all DOE Energy offices, assisting rural customers with storage for resilience, and incorporating storage into public investments in transportation electrification and workforce development,” Kelly Speakes-Backman of the national ESA said.
“ESA is pleased to support these efforts to ready the electric system for 21st century demands to provide resilient, efficient, sustainable, and affordable electric service. We encourage members of the Senate to swiftly advance their similar legislation this Congress.”
Various politicians across the US made their own statements on the bill yesterday, including California 44th Congressional District Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán, who pointed out that as well as committing to critical investments in electric vehicle deployment, community solar generation and climate environmental justice programmes, the Act also has “crucial regulations for reducing climate-warming hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) pollution. If adopted, this could prevent a half degree Celsius of warming by mid-century,” Diaz Barragán said.
“The Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act will make a difference in slowing climate change and reducing the harm climate change and air pollution are causing frontline environmental justice communities.”