Wyden Bill Would Unleash Clean Energy, Accelerate our Electric Future

April 21, 2021
Keith Gaby, 202-572-3336, kgaby@edf.org
(Washington, DC - April 21, 2021) Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), today introduced the Clean Energy for America Act, a bill that would create an emissions-based incentive program to spur unprecedented growth in clean power, clean transportation and energy efficiency.  

“Senator Wyden’s plan provides economic certainty for clean energy producers and consumers, which is key as we transition to a healthier future,” said Environmental Defense Fund President Fred Krupp. “By making the tax code smarter to reward investment in clean energy while removing incentives for fossil fuels, the measure will unleash the innovation needed to slash climate pollution in our power, transportation and buildings sectors.” 

This tax framework is technology-neutral and would allow power producers to qualify for either a production tax credit or an investment tax credit for facilities with zero or net negative carbon emissions. It also allows homeowners to qualify for an investment tax credit to install onsite carbon-free generation.  

Additionally, the measure provides a 30% investment tax credit for qualifying grid improvements like energy storage and transmission, which will enable the deployment of additional zero emission power and improve grid stability and resilience. Investments in zero emission renewable electricity or energy storage in qualifying low-income areas would receive even higher incentives.  

On transportation, the measure ramps up consumer incentives for electric vehicles and associated charging infrastructure – helping to address two critical elements to wide-spread deployment, price and range anxiety. Commercial vehicles will now have access to a tax credit worth 30% of the vehicle’s purchase price. This will lower prices, especially for heavy and medium-duty vehicles. The bill also provides incentives for fuels with lifecycle carbon emissions at least 25% cleaner than the current U.S. nationwide average. 

Finally, it would provide performance-based incentives to increase energy efficiency in new and existing homes and commercial buildings.

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