Solar stocks rose Thursday after members of Congress announced a spending deal that includes $369 billion in clean energy projects. If passed, the legislation would be the largest climate spending package in the nation’s history.
Clean energy industry executives say the bill is a potential reprieve at a time when climate action is urgently needed. Titled the “Inflation Reduction Act of 2022,” reports indicate the plan will include funding for clean energy infrastructure and jobs.
Things looked less rosy for the solar sector earlier this month. West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, a key voter, has indicated that he opposes including solar funding in the spending package. At the same time, solar and other renewable energy companies have faced rising raw material costs and supply chain disruptions.
The bill will now be considered by the Senate next week. The investment tax credit will be extended for 10 years as it is scheduled to be reduced at the end of 2022. Incentives are also provided for the domestic production of solar equipment. The package will also pave the way for expanded infrastructure around electric vehicles, hydrogen and nuclear power.
The rising sun
At the beginning of July BP (BP) published the Statistical Review of World Energy 2022. It analyzes trends in energy consumption on an annual basis. Global primary energy consumption rose 5.5% last year to a record high, the fastest rate of growth since the early 1970s.
While fossil fuels accounted for 82% of primary energy use in 2021, renewables are on the rise. Wind power was the largest contributor, but solar power consumption jumped 22% to a new all-time high. It stands to reason that this number will continue to increase if Congress passes this spending package.
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