L.A. Business Council Statement on U.S. Congress Passing Historic Legislation to Advance Clean Energy Economy

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Business Council (LABC), which represents more than 500 business and civic leaders across industry sectors, today released the following statement:

“As our planet continues to experience catastrophic overheating, we commend federal lawmakers for their bold, incisive leadership in passing the most ambitious climate action legislation since the Clean Air Act of 1970.

This landmark effort comes at a critical moment as global warming exacts a devastating toll worldwide. In California, these impacts include the worst megadrought in 12 centuries, increasingly destructive, fatal wildfires, and triple-digit temperatures that continue to set all-time highs.

The sweeping climate-focused investments and incentives promised in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) deliver a momentous opportunity to boost our nation’s clean energy economy and to prove once and for all that environmental stewardship and economic growth are inextricably linked.

The legislation comes at an opportune time, as California works to reach 100% renewable energy by 2045, with the City of LA aiming to achieve that goal a decade earlier. A key part of that effort includes the state requiring that all new passenger vehicles sold in California be zero-carbon by 2035. Key provisions of the IRA – including extensions of the investment and production tax credits; a first-time inclusion of credits for standalone energy storage; permitting reform and tax credits for new and used electric vehicles, among hundreds of billions of dollars in other investments – will help the state meet these goals and potentially reach them even sooner than expected.

For years, our business group has effectively advocated for accelerating investments in clean energy, transportation, and environmental remediation, putting Los Angeles and the entire state of California on the front lines in the fight against global warming. These results have made the state a leader in cleantech job creation, with Los Angeles leading the way among municipalities, with over 85,000 jobs in the sector – growth that is rapidly accelerating.

LABC has been committed to helping model, scale, and accelerate the use of local, distributed energy resources to create a cleaner and more resilient energy network for Los Angeles. These efforts include helping develop and pass the nation’s largest Feed-in Tariff (FiT) program in 2013 – enabling individuals to sell energy generated from their rooftop solar back to the grid – and later helping triple the capacity of that program in 2019. Last year, the LABC Institute, our research and education arm, partnered with the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation to deliver recommendations to build equity into the state’s clean transportation efforts.

All this is happening as our state continues to lead the nation in economic growth. As Gov. Newsom recently noted, California’s GDP increased by 21 percent over the last five years, far outpacing other population centers – such as Texas and Florida – with comparatively lackluster climate agendas.

We are proud to be part of the resistance against the climate crisis, and we are glad to see that we are not alone: The federal government is finally embracing California’s sustainability leadership.”

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