Build Back Better held promise for the past year that could propel the growth of the solar industry. If instituted, this framework could aid the United States to tracking to meet its climate goals, create millions of jobs, enable a more sustainable labor force and grow the economy from the bottom. However, the plan was introduced in 2020. Two years later and it continues to have major roadblocks. On top of that, we have seen the benefits for C&I projects be dwindled down and the bill supports large, utility scale development.
Meanwhile, the industry has seen significant supply chain constraints and cost increase – outweighing any potential benefits of waiting for it to pass. The most recent probe by the US Department of Commerce is adding to the cost constraints by increasing the costs of some panels by 230+% and decreasing the supply of panels sourced through methods not at risk of the additional tariff.
SEIA said this framework contains the most ambitious and transformational clean energy policies the group has ever seen from Congress. “Climate action cannot wait and it’s time for law makers to pass policies that drive clean energy deployment,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of SEIA, in a statement.
In the long-term, Build Back Better will help to bring the production of clean energy technology to our soil through the use of American-made steel and other resources. This is expected to create thousands of new jobs and appears to be a spark for the revitalization of American manufacturing. It will incentivize the growth of domestic supply chains in solar, wind and many other industries. Without a doubt, it will also add costs to the overall project.
Yet, with electricity prices skyrocketing to the highest we have seen in 15+ years, constant threat of grid interruptions, and the growing need for electrification, the time to go solar is now.