President’s American Jobs Plan Turns to Green Bank Model to Accelerate Clean Energy Deployment, Job Creation

Proposal has gained GOP support from Rep. Don Young and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick

WASHINGTON—The White House’s American Jobs Plan includes $27 billion for a Clean Energy & Sustainability Accelerator, based on the proven green bank model, to mobilize private investment into distributed energy resources; retrofits of residential, commercial and municipal buildings; and clean transportation. The bank would make at least 40 percent of its investments in disadvantaged communities that have not yet benefited from clean energy investments.

“I congratulate President Biden, the whole White House team, and lead Congressional champions Senators Markey and Van Hollen and Congresswoman Dingell on the decision to create what would be the first national climate bank. The Clean Energy & Sustainability Accelerator will expand in scale and scope the way more than a dozen state and local green banks that for the last decade have combined public and private capital to expedite the transition from carbon to clean power as the platform for American society and business. We at the Coalition for Green Capital look forward to discussing with legislators the actual activities of the Accelerator as the brilliant infrastructure plan makes its way through Congress,” said CGC CEO Reed Hundt. 

The nonprofit Clean Energy & Sustainability Accelerator was included in the U.S. House Energy & Commerce Committee’s comprehensive CLEAN Future Act. 

Since Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.) introduced S. 283 and H.R. 806, they have gained Republican support in the House from Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) and Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska). Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) has also added her support since introduction. 

The National Academies of Science has recommended that Congress fund an institution based on the green bank model. In its report, it wrote, “Private sources of capital are unlikely to be sufficient to finance the low-carbon economic transition, especially during the 2020s when the effort is new. To ensure industrial competitiveness and quality of life, the United States should establish a Green Bank to mobilize finance for low-carbon infrastructure and business in America.”

In January, two independent reports by the Analysis Group and The Brattle Group found that a national Clean Energy Accelerator would have an outsized impact helping the United States recover from the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and also speed up the country’s deep decarbonization and Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) efforts.

Green banks currently exist in over 14 cities and states across the country and have supported over $5 billion in investment in clean energy projects in their states and local communities, and much of this investment has been targeted toward low- and moderate-income households and communities. View a list of projects that have been supported by already existing state and local green banks.

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