Morten Lund Compares Benefits for Clean Energy in Biden Administration’s American Jobs Plan vs. State and Local Actions

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Energy development attorney Morten Lund contributed an article to POWER magazine titled “Biden’s Jobs Plan—A Game-Changer for Clean Energy?,” published July 1, 2021. Lund outlines the potential impacts of the American Jobs Plan for increasing the use of clean energy and looks at the steps being taken at the state level, which he argues are more effective than those taken federally.

The American Jobs Plan — described on the White House website as “an investment in America that will create millions of good jobs, rebuild our country’s infrastructure, and position the United States to out-compete China” — contains proposed actions to promote clean energy that include tax credits and other financial incentives for renewable energy and energy storage, plus electrification of the federal vehicle fleet.

Though Lund describes the proposals as “not revolutionary,” he says if the plan “were to be implemented more or less as described, it would arguably be the most extensive clean energy action ever taken by the federal government.”

Lund believes that the main driver of renewable energy growth in the U.S. to date has been state and local laws and policies, which have included mandates to procure wind energy and use energy storage, the adoption of renewable portfolio standards, and other such actions.

“Where the federal policies supporting (or opposing) clean energy have amounted to a gentle nudging of the markets, the state policies have been a swift boot to the rear,” Lund said. “Federal tax credits have enticed investors. State mandates have directly created predictable and financeable markets.”

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Morten A. Lund
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