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To: All Members of the United States Congress
Re: IBEW and SEIA call on Congress to return to the negotiating table to pass climate legislation
On behalf of the more than 775,000 serving and retired members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and members of the Solar Energies Industries Association (SEIA), the national trade association for the U.S. solar industry, we urge members of Congress to return to the negotiating table and pass pro-worker, pro-growth, and anti-inflationary climate legislation. We believe there is broad support for the legislation, which will be a boon to the US economy and provide critical climate relief.
The clean energy transformation our nation needs to address climate change requires a comprehensive approach, including well-trained and highly skilled unionized workers, as well as hundreds of billions of dollars of private sector investment in American manufacturing, workforce development and solar energy deployment. and storage. Legislation currently being debated in Congress will also reduce the deficit and dampen inflation.
Our organizations represent the people whose work helps reverse climate change and provides investments in the workforce and infrastructure needed to make a strong and equitable clean energy economy a reality.
IBEW and SEIA support the proposals under consideration, including:
- Tax incentives for clean energy and electric vehicle charging with applicable wage and apprenticeship requirements for construction, alteration or repair work above 1 megawatt, including for contractors and subcontractors
- National content requirements for clean energy and tax incentives for electric vehicle charging
- Solar Power Manufacturing Act for America
- A new tax credit for autonomous energy storage
- Support for interstate transmission lines and zero-emission buildings
- Increased investment in clean energy in low-income communities that will create well-paying union jobs and address equity and environmental justice concerns
Lower costs have contributed to the growth of solar storage and batteries. According to a study by Lawrence Berkeley National Labs, at least 160 gigawatts of solar power are being developed with collocated batteries, representing nearly 34% of solar power currently on standby. In the United States, nearly 40% of planned solar projects have collocated battery storage.
The deployment of solar power and storage will reduce inflation for all US energy consumers, according to reports from Bloomberg New Energy Finance and Rhodium Group, among others.
This legislation combines labor standards with an aggressive path to solar development. With it, we can create the jobs needed to build a strong economy, prosperity for all Americans, and a major tool in fighting inflation. Without it, we face a troubling climate future and a missed opportunity to regain global climate leadership. Members of Congress, we implore you to reach an American energy agreement.
Lonnie R. Stephenson, IBEW President
Abigail Ross Hopper, President and CEO of SEIA