Climate Policy News You Can Use — May 2024

As we approach the 2-year anniversary of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), it’s important to reflect on the wins but also address some of the challenges ahead. Politico recently did a comprehensive deep dive into where the funds stand and how they are being spent. Please reach out if you are facing unique challenges in the places you are investing. It’s important to amplify your great investments but also help address the barriers along the way.

FERC is Making Clean Energy More Reliable

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued two rules that aim to speed and strengthen the buildout of a modern and reliable electric transmission system across the country. Modernizing the electric grid will help unlock the full potential of the hundreds of clean energy projects investments spurred by the Inflation Reduction Act. See EDF’s statement.

A key aspect of the rule establishes that regional authorities will consider corporate climate commitments when developing their forward-looking planning. More than ever, your renewable energy and climate commitments have a clear impact on demand and grid build-out. As we get closer to the planning process, we will follow up with how you can amplify these important commitments.

  • Take Action:
    • Voice your support for FERC’s new rules and how it helps you achieve your net-zero renewable energy goals.

Salesforce is a great example of a company that has demonstrated strong corporate leadership for the Transmission Planning and Cost Allocation Rule. Through its release, Salesforce presents the clear need for built out transmission, provides a landscape of the policy problem, and states that Salesforce benefits from greater planning and built out transmission – offering their support of the rule. Please consider this example as you think about FERC, transmission buildout, and how your company fits into that puzzle!

Farm Bill Text and a Markup

Chairman Thompson of the House Agriculture Committee introduced the House version of the Farm Bill. The House Agriculture Committee marked up the proposed bill last Thursday, and the bill passed out of Committee.  The bill now heads to the House floor for consideration.

This version removes the climate guardrails from the IRA’s investments in USDA conservation programs and diverts critical funding away from funding programs that are heavily oversubscribed and underfunded. An amendment was introduced during markup to specifically protect the IRA funding in the Farm Bill but failed on a party-line vote. Removing the climate guardrails and repurposing those conservation funds would make farmers and ranchers more vulnerable to extreme weather events and undermine efforts to maintain productive soils, clean water and healthy ecosystems. The benefits of climate-smart agriculture offer economic benefits by improving yields, reducing input costs and making agricultural operations more resilient to extreme weather. See EDF’s statement.

  • Take Action:
    • Advocate to members on the about the importance of moving the IRA funding into the Farm Bill and maintaining the critical climate guardrails that prioritize reducing GHG emissions in agricultural production.
  • Go Deeper:
    • Check out this article highlighting climate risks threatening farmers in the state of Georgia.

Reminder: Power Plant Rules are Here!

Business assets and capital face serious risk from extreme weather and rising temperatures due to emissions. Luckily, the EPA has released its final rule regarding new and existing power plants to avoid 1.38 billion metric tons of pollution in CO2 emissions through 2047 that can deliver up to $370 billion (an annualized net of $20 billion) in net climate and public health benefits. The new rule is key for businesses who have ambitious climate commitments and renewable energy goals, by slashing emissions from these power plants. See EDF’s statement.

  • Take Action:
    • Voice your support for the regulation of new and existing power plants and highlight how the rule helps you meet your clean energy and climate goals.

What’s new with the IRA?

  • The Department of Treasury and IRS released proposed guidance on the Clean Electricity Production Credit and Clean Electricity Investment Credit.
  • Overwhelmed by the amount of IRA trackers and resources? The Business Council for Sustainable Energy has you covered with its picks of the 15 best.
  • EPA Research: Electric Sector Emissions Impacts of the Inflation Reduction Act

Keeping up with the Administration

  • The Administration announced seven principals for high-integrity carbon markets. This Joint Statement of Policy codifies the U.S. government’s approach to advance high-integrity VCMs.
    • Check out EDF’s own Lea Borkenhagen’s LinkedIn post for more.

ICYMI – Things We’re Tracking

  1. NZAA Resource: Check out these leaders discussing the business case for different aspects of sustainability.
  2. NZAA Resource: Check out the NZAA’s upcoming webinars focused on suppliers and sustainability.

That is all for May, I hope you are finding time to get outside and start to enjoy the summer. Thank you for reading, and if this was forwarded to you, email us to subscribe!


Daniel Neff on behalf of the Climate Policy Leadership Team