Climate Change

23 Aug 2022

U.S. To Spend More Than $500 Billion on Climate Over a Decade Under Three Laws, Study Says

23 Aug 2022  by   

A volunteer holds a placard during a news conference on the climate crisis and the Inflation Reduction Act at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., August 12, 2022. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

The U.S. government will spend more than $500 billion on climate technology and clean energy over the next decade under three recently enacted laws, an analysis by non-profit RMI found.

The tally is based on this month's Inflation Reduction and CHIPS acts and last year's Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. Together they fund climate-related research and pilot studies and support manufacturing.

"Together they form a coherent green industrial policy, in the sense that there are strategic industries that they focus on and a set of tools designed to accelerate production up and down the supply chain," said Lachlan Carey, co-author of the report, published on Monday.

The estimated $514 billion total includes $362 billion from the IRA, $98 billion from the infrastructure act and $54 billion from the bipartisan-supported CHIPS law, although Congress will have to pass further legislation for some of the funding to be released. The analysis excludes additional agriculture and land-related climate spending.

The CHIPS bill, for instance, will fund climate-related efforts in materials science such as developing new battery chemistry and more efficient solar panels.

Annual federal spending on climate and clean energy over the next five years will be roughly 15 times that of the 1990s and early 2000s and about triple that of recent years, the study said.

U.S. government estimates show renewable energy is becoming a bigger part of production.

Solar and wind power will have the biggest growth from 2021 levels, U.S government's Energy Information Administration estimated in March 2022 Solar and wind power will have the biggest growth from 2021 levels, EIA estimated in March 2022

But study authors said climate action needed to speed up.

"It's a long process that we don't have time to be that long. Like solar and wind took 40 years - we have 10 years," said Jun Shepard, another co-author.


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