Washington, DC – The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) applauded yesterday’s Senate passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (H. R. 5376). FCNL specifically cited the climate and energy provisions, worth $369 billion, that will begin the nation’s transformation from a fossil fuel-based economy to one where renewables and green energy will take a more commanding position for decades to come.
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“For years now, Quakers and other people of faith have been urging Congress to treat climate change as the existential threat to the planet that it so clearly is. This bill finally begins to do that.” said Bridget Moix, General Secretary of FCNL. “There’s still much work to be done for environmental and economic justice, but we wholeheartedly welcome the Inflation Reduction Act as an historic and vital step forward for the United States and the world.”
The bill, passed on a 50-50 party line vote with the tiebreaker coming from Vice President Kamala Harris, has been debated in one form or another for months. It represents an important part of President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda, on top of COVID-19 and infrastructure legislation passed in 2021.
“This bill places the United States on a path to reduce its carbon emissions by 40% below 2005 levels by 2030, a positive step forward as the world works to stave off the worst effects of climate change,” said Clarence Edwards, FCNL’s sustainable energy and environment legislative director. “With tax credits and incentives for renewable energy, incentives for electric vehicles, and $60 billion in funding for environmental justice initiatives, this bill takes us that much closer to a clean economy in an equitable society.”
Despite the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, FCNL will continue its advocacy on these issues by seeking to provide support to the communities that are most impacted by climate change. During its Annual Meeting and Quaker Public Policy Institute, November 16-20, FCNL will bring up to 500 advocates from all over the country to lobby Congress to maintain the 50% increase in environmental justice funding provided by the Environmental Protection Agency to benefit these impacted communities.
In addition, FCNL will keep up its tireless advocacy for a permanent extension to the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit. Too many vital economic justice issues initially included in the package did not make it, but that does not mean that they will be abandoned or ignored.
To learn more, please visit www.fcnl.org.