Update Nov. 15: President Biden signed the infrastructure bill at a White House ceremony, emphasizing the new law’s focus on environmental justice and economic opportunity.
The bipartisan infrastructure bill was finally passed by the House of Representatives on Nov. 5 and sent to President Biden’s desk, who is expected to sign it when lawmakers return from recess, according to AP. While the infrastructure bill does include some provisions related to the renewable energy industry, such as grid modernization investments, the Build Back Better Act is the legislation that paves the way for big incentives for the solar industry.
The latest version of the Build Back Better Act includes tax credit extensions and direct pay for the residential and commercial markets, a first-of-its-kind standalone storage tax credit and tax credits to boost domestic solar manufacturing.
The House of Representatives had hoped to pass the Build Back Better Act at the same time as the infrastructure bill, according to CNBC, but was only able to pass a procedural vote setting up the conditions of the final vote, such as debate time limits. Before voting in favor, moderate Democrats insisted on viewing the Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of the bill’s long-term impacts on the budget deficit, known as the CBO score. The score is expected to be completed this week.
“House action on the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the rule for the Build Back Better Act represents tangible progress on the infrastructure and climate agenda in Washington, D.C. Specifically, the bipartisan infrastructure bill now on its way to the White House for President Biden’s signature contains important new policies and federal investments that will accelerate the large-scale transmission we need to build a modern and decarbonized grid,” said Gregory Wetstone, president and CEO of the American Council on Renewable Energy, in a statement. “Additionally, the approval of the rule for the Build Back Better Act clears the way for a near-term floor vote on the Build Back Better Act whose clean energy tax platform lays a credible foundation for the emissions reductions we know we are going to need to meet our global climate commitments.”
If the act passes the House, it returns to the Senate for revisions and a vote before making it to President Biden.