Democratic lawmakers create Electrification Caucus in Congress

Published on November 19, 2021 by Dave Kovaleski

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A group of Democratic lawmakers in Congress recently established the Electrification Caucus, which will work to advance policies to accelerate widespread electrification.

The caucus was created by U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Tina Smith (D-MN), and U.S. Reps. Paul Tonko (D-NY) and Kathy Castor (D-FL). The lawmakers said widespread electrification will have the benefits of lowering energy bills, improving air quality and public health, addressing the climate crisis, and creating jobs.

“Electrifying our homes, commercial buildings, and vehicles is one of the most practical actions we can take to address the climate crisis, and it deserves to be elevated. Using electricity for household needs like heating and cooking will help lower energy bills and insulate American families from volatile fuel prices. Electrifying our lives and our economy will also create jobs in local communities and improve the air we breathe in our homes and workplaces,” the caucus members said in a statement.

While there are many benefits, they added that there are also barriers, which the caucus will look to break down to ensure electrification is accessible to everyone.

“For our constituents who are rightfully demanding action on the climate crisis, electrification is something tangible and meaningful that we can do right now to make a difference. As members of Congress, we have the opportunity to put forward policies to help lower upfront costs, reduce friction points, and increase access to these technologies for all of our constituents,” they added.

The Electrification Caucus plans to address a host of issues, including consumer rebates, tax credits, and financing mechanisms; workforce training; justice and equity issues related to electrification; electric vehicle charging infrastructure; building codes; grid improvements and expanding transmission; upstream incentives to spur U.S. manufacturing; transition of electric sector to clean energy; and incentives to encourage electrification of industrial processes and facilities.