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Build Back Better Offers Big Economic Benefits In Illinois

Springfield, Illinois — A new NRDC analysis shows that the Build Back Better agenda, as it currently stands, has the potential to significantly accelerate clean energy investment, economic activity, and job growth in Illinois. The Senate needs to address the provisions as soon as possible to bring these climate and economic benefits to states across the country.

“The stakes are enormous. This agenda recognizes that there is tremendous economic opportunity in tackling the climate crisis,” said J.C. Kibbey, Senior Illinois Clean Energy Advocate at NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council). “Illinois is already ahead of the curve on clean energy. The Build Back Better agenda would be a win for our state and a win for the planet.”

The Build Back Better agenda includes historic clean electricity investments, including:

  • $150 billion in clean electricity tax incentives
  • $25 billion for clean energy loans, grants, research, procurement, and more
  • $20 billion for projects that reduce or avoid emissions by leveraging private sector investment
  • $9.7 billion for transitioning rural electric cooperatives away from fossil fuels
  • $7 billion for state, local, and nonprofit programs to install zero-emission distributed technologies in low-income and disadvantaged communities
  • $5 billion for low-carbon projects in communities impacted by closures of fossil infrastructure like refineries or coal plants

The full fact sheet can be seen here.

“Enacting the Build Back Better agenda is a critically-needed investment in our nation’s future,” said John Bowman, Managing Director for Government Affairs at NRDC. “Already, clean energy is the biggest job creator in our country’s energy sector, employing almost three times as many workers as the fossil fuel industry. The Build Back Better agenda offers tax incentives to further boost job creation and expand the renewable energy industry, especially in low-income communities, and support a just transition for communities that have relied on fossil fuel revenue and jobs in the past.”

Background

The House-passed Build Back Better agenda contains more than $150 billion in clean electricity tax incentives as well as more than $25 billion for clean energy loans, grants, research, procurement, and other essential programs. Tax incentives are critical to driving clean energy deployment and reducing the cost of renewables and other clean energy resources.

The tax incentives included in the legislation are flexible and accessible to support all types of developers (small and large, for-profit and not-for-profit) who will usher in the fastest — and most sustained — build-out of renewables in the country’s history. New bonus credits for projects built that meet strong labor standards, create well-paying jobs, and drive equitable access to clean energy resources.

115,133 of Illinoisians worked in the clean energy sector in 2020, according to the Clean Jobs America 2021 report from E2. This includes 17,608 in renewable energy, 80,671 in energy efficiency, and 10,695 in clean vehicles. The clean energy sector in Illinois grew 5.8% percent between 2018 and 2020, and the Build Back Better agenda would accelerate that growth in the coming years.

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NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world’s natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at www.nrdc.org and follow us on Twitter @NRDC. 

Press release from NRDC.

 
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NRDC is the nation's most effective environmental action group, combining the grassroots power of 1.3 million members and online activists with the courtroom clout and expertise of more than 350 lawyers, scientists, and other professionals.

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